A good Samaritan is being hailed as a hero after he helped Santa Ana police track down a suspected rapist.
According to Santa Ana police, a man suspected of kidnapping and attempting to sexually assault a 28-year-old woman was arrested in Costa Mesa last night thanks to a photo taken by a quick-thinking witness. Detectives say 27-year-old old Jorge Cruz De Armas was taken into custody at his workplace after evidence led police to him.
The incident began Monday afternoon after De Armas offered a ride to the victim to a nearby Wells Fargo bank. When the woman got into his truck, De Armas apparently told her he wanted to have sex. She refused, and he asked for her number. When she refused again, police say De Armas pulled into an alley and duct-taped her mouth shut.
At that same time, Taylor O'Neill was heading into work when he saw the suspect's truck blocking his way in. After honking a few times to try and get De Armas's truck to move, he got out to confront the driver. That's when he heard muffled screams and spotted the 28-year-old woman inside.
O'Neill told KTLA that when he saw the victim's face and heard her screams, he tried opening the door and banged on the window and get her safe. During the melee, the victim managed to unlock the truck door and get to safety. As the suspect began driving away, O'Neill snapped a photo of the truck, which he later showed authorities.
Detectives managed to track down the suspect at his work and arrested him Wednesday afternoon. Police say they believe there may be more victims out there and encouraged any potential victims to contact Detective E. Majors at 714-245-8378, firstname.lastname@example.org or Orange County Crime Stoppers at 1-855-TIP-OCCS.
Photo: Santa Ana Police Department