UNION CITY (CBS 5 / BCN) — A man who is a registered sex offender was arrested on suspicion of sexually assaulting a 2-year-old girl inside a store in Union City, police said Thursday.
Eugene Melendres Ramos, 36, allegedly grabbed the girl about 1 p.m. Wednesday inside a Dollar Tree discount store located at 1720 Decoto Road, according to Union City police.
The victim was with her grandmother and aunt at the store. When they went to return a ribbon to a Christmas-themed aisle, the girl walked around the aisle and out of view, and was grabbed by Ramos, police said.
Less than a minute later, the grandmother and aunt noticed the girl was missing, and found her pinned down by Ramos in the next aisle over. The girl had her pants and diaper removed and was being straddled by Ramos, who had pulled his pants and underwear down and was sexually assaulting her, according to police.
Ramos fled the store on foot and was chased by the grandmother, aunt, and several customers. A solicitor in front of the store also gave chase when he exited the building and tackled him, police said.
A Bay Area Rapid Transit police officer who happened to be nearby was flagged down by the small group holding Ramos down. He was arrested on suspicion of kidnapping, rape, sexual acts with a child, and false imprisonment, police said.
The officer who made the arrest, Kory Frost, a 28-year veteran of the BART Police Department, thanked the Good Samaritans at the store for helping detain Ramos.
“A lot of people are saying that I did a good job, and I appreciate that. But the heroes are the citizens, not me,” Frost said.
Ramos was scheduled to be arraigned Friday morning in the Fremont
Hall of Justice. He was being held at Santa Rita Jail on $350,000 bail,
according to county records.
Fremont police Lt. Kelly Musgrove said Thursday that investigators were not yet releasing details of Ramos’ prior criminal record, but according to California’s Megan’s Law website – which lists registered sexual offenders – he had previously been accused of assault with intent to commit rape, sodomy and oral copulation.
Anyone who may have witnessed the Wednesday’s sexual assault was asked by authorities to call Fremont Detective Sgt. Jared Rinetti at (510) 675-5229. People wishing to remain anonymous could call the tip line at (510) 675-5207 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, police said.
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