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Sexual Batteries Committed in Huntington Beach

A series of attacks on women in Huntington Beach in August and September 2013 prompted a police investigation, and the arrest of a suspect Sept. 19.

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A 19-year-old Westminster mall employee has been arrested on suspicion he committed a series of sexual assaults in Huntington Beach, police said Thursday.

surveillance-hunting-beach

Huntington Beach released these surveillance photos Tuesday of a man believed to have committed sexual assaults. A suspect was arrested Wednesday.

Mathew Andrew Linville was taken into custody at his home late Wednesday afternoon, according to Huntington Beach Police Department.

He is suspected in three sexual batteries in recent weeks in which a man approached women in Huntington Beach and groped their breasts and buttocks before running away, police said.

He was being held on $100,000 bail at Huntington Beach jail on a suspicion of assault with intent to commit rape and sexual battery, police said.

The three assaults occurred on Aug. 28 and Sept. 13 in the area of Bella Terra shipping mall, where police said Linville worked.

Plainclothes officers were on the case in the area of the mall and saw a man who matched the description of the attacker.

They saw the man go into a store in the mall and contacted the manager, who confirmed the man — Linville — worked at the business, police said.

“Investigators conducted follow up investigation and were able to connect Linville to the attacks,” a news release from Huntington Beach police stated.

Evidence found at Linville’s home and statements connected Linville to the attacks, police said. Linville was also connected with a similar attack in Westminster, police added.

Huntington Beach police Lt. Mitchell O’Brien said the department was not releasing the name of the store where Linville worked in part because employees may be potential witnesses to the alleged crimes.

Earlier, the attacker had been described by police as Hispanic, in his mid-20s, with short, dark hair. He was said to be 5 feet 10 inches to 5 feet 11 inches tall and to weigh 140 pounds.

Huntington-Beach-attacker

The Huntington Beach Police Department released this sketch of a man who attacked a jogger on Aug. 28.

One assault on a jogger took place near the mall on Aug. 28; two others occurred about an hour apart on Sept. 13 inside the lingerie department at the Burlington Coat Factory and near the Bella Terra mall’s parking structure, police had said earlier this week.

Anyone with additional information or who believes they were a victim is asked to call the Huntington Beach Police Information Hotline at 714-375-5066.

Police released surveillance pictures Tuesday of a man wanted in three sexual assault in less than three weeks in Huntington Beach.

surveillance-hunting-beachThe first incident occurred at about 6:45 a.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 28 near Huntington Village Lane and Center Avenue, close to Golden West College and multiple shopping centers, according to a news release from the Huntington Beach Police Department.

The jogger noticed a man following her and began running toward her apartment when she was pushed to the ground from behind by the man.

He attempted to sexually assault her, ripping her shirt. She as able to get away, police said.

Two similar attacks were reported between 10:40 a.m. and 11:44 a.m. on Friday, Sept. 13 in the area of Bella Terra Mall where the surveillance pictures were taken.

One incident occurred in the lingerie department of the Burlington Coat Factory. The other happened near the parking structure at 7777 Edinger Avenue, according to police.

The attacker in all three incidents was described as Hispanic with short, dark hair, 5 feet 10 inches to 5 feet 11 inches tall, and weighing about 140 pounds.

He was wearing a light gray T-shirt, dark jeans and black shoes with orange laces.

Anyone with information was urged to contact the Huntington Beach Police Department at (714) 375-5066.

After a female jogger was the victim of an attempted sexual assaulted in an early-morning attack in Huntington Beach, police are asking for the public’s help identifying her assailant.

Huntington-Beach-attacker

The Huntington Beach Police Department released this sketch of a man who attacked a jogger.

The incident occurred at about 6:45 a.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 28 near Huntington Village Lane and Center Avenue, close to Golden West College and multiple shopping centers, according to a news release from the Huntington Beach Police Department.

The jogger noticed a man following her and began running toward her apartment when she was pushed to the ground from behind by the man.

He attempted to sexually assault her, ripping her shirt. She as able to get away, police said.

The attacker was described as Hispanic with short, dark hair, 5 feet 10 inches to 5 feet 11 inches tall, and weighing about 140 pounds, police said. He was wearing a light gray T-shirt, dark jeans and black shoes with orange laces.

Anyone with information was asked to call Huntington Beach police Detective Tunstall at 714-536-5995.

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