Man Charged With Trying to Forcibly Rape Woman in Violent Assault at Santa Ana Bus Stop
A Santa Ana man is facing four felony charges, including attempted forcible rape, after he was caught on video sexually assaulting a 52-year-old woman at a bus stop, prosecutors said Monday.
Erick Alvarez Hernandez, a 27-year-old Santa Ana resident, was also charged with kidnapping to commit a sex offense, forcible oral copulation and assault with force likely to produce great bodily injury, Orange County district attorney’s officials said in a news release.
Hernandez was arrested last Thursday in connection with the violent attack that occurred Jan. 5 at a bus station outside the MacArthur Village condo complex at 1000 W. MacArthur Blvd.
The bus stop, near the intersection of MacArthur Boulevard and Bristol Street, is in a heavily trafficked area with many commercial businesses, and investigators noted numerous motorists drove by during the incident.
The victim was sitting on a bench when Hernandez approached her from behind, wrapped his arms around her neck and pulled her to a secluded area, the DA’s office said.
He then allegedly began punching and sexually assaulting her. Detectives have said there was no exchange of words before the attack was launched.
Video evidence of the assault was captured by an Orange County transit bus that pulled up as the man identified as Hernandez was still on top of the victim.
The perpetrator can be seen wearing a blue Dallas Cowboys jersey with the number 82. Police said they found a jersey that appears to be identical after searching Hernandez’s home.
Detectives said they were able to identify the 27-year-old as a suspect in part because of his “belligerent behavior” at a nearby Buffalo Wild Wings the night of the assault.
Officials then began surveilling the suspect and arrested him outside his workplace in Irvine.
In addition to the four felony charges, prosecutors are seeking a sentencing enhancements for inflicting great bodily injury to a sexual assault victim, as well as sentencing enhancement allegations for kidnapping and inflicting great bodily injury, the DA’s office said.
The defendant is scheduled to be arraigned Feb. 8.
If convicted as charged, Hernandez could face up to 41 years to life in state prison.
He was being held on $1 million bail at the Central Men’s Jail, inmate records show.