Police say they took a DNA sample in September 1998 after a woman said she was raped at knifepoint. At that time, no suspects were identified, and the case went cold.
But in December, detectives say they were notified that an inmate in prison on unrelated charges had matched that sample.
Police say 56-year-old Raphel Burroughs was charged on Tuesday with the rape. Burroughs is currently serving a five-year sentence for crack cocaine distribution.
It was not immediately clear if Burroughs had an attorney.