The suspect caught up to one of the women (26 year old) and attempted to sexually assault her. The victim fought back and was able to scream for help. The second woman escaped and was able to summon help. A group of her friends came to her assistance an the suspect was chased off. The victim escaped without additional physical harm.
Responding officers quickly locked down a perimeter and began searching for the suspect. Emergency Dispatchers were able to broadcast an accurate and timely description of the suspect to the responding officers. Officers located him in the area and immediately took him into custody.
The suspect was identified as Joey Patino Hernandez (35 years).
Here is the booking photo for Mr. Hernandez.
Mr. Hernandez is a sex registrant pursuant to Megan's Law. Mr. Hernandez is also on Probation for a 2012 Sexual Battery (Think Inappropriate Touching) where he received 30 days in jail and 36 months of probation. He also has a history of drug related arrests from Santa Cruz, Watsonville, and Capitola. Mr. Hernandez is currently transient with previous addresses in Watsonville and 115 Coral Street in Santa Cruz.
Anyone with additional information is encouraged to contact the Santa Cruz Police Department Investigations unit at (831) 420-5820. Tipsters may also leave an anonymous tip via our mobile apps, or the tip line listed below.