Police have arrested a suspect in connection with the kidnap, rape and attempted murder of a Palo Alto woman early Saturday (May 22).
Lionel Blanks, 36, of Santa Clara was arrested near his home at 5 p.m. Wednesday by Santa Clara police detectives, according to Palo Alto police spokeswoman Lt. Sandra Brown.
Blanks allegedly brutally attacked a woman in the early morning hours of May 22 after climbing into her vehicle in the 1600 block of El Camino Real, in Palo Alto.
She was beaten, abducted, and taken to Santa Clara, where she was sexually assaulted and raped, police reported. She flagged down a passing motorist and called Santa Clara police. After an initial investigation they referred the case to Palo Alto police, according to Brown.
Blanks is initially being charged with kidnapping, sexual assault, robbery and attempted murder. Official charges will be determined by the Santa Clara County District Attorney's office.
Blanks' arraignment date has not yet been set, Brown said.
Brown said there was "excellent teamwork" by Palo Alto and Santa Clara police departments, the Stanford Department of Public Safety, the Santa Clara County Crime Lab, and the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office.
"We also want to particularly note the cooperation of the news media and to thank the citizens who have called in with information about this case."