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Man suspected in Southgate attack arrested

Police said 28-year-old man pushed woman into bushes, punched her in the face

Palo Alto police on Saturday arrested the man who they believe violently attacked a woman in the city's Southgate neighborhood on Thursday.

Officers made the arrest about around 12:30 p.m., after an officer identified him at the Palo Alto Transit Center at 95 University Ave. Detectives had previously identified him as a suspect based on leads, including descriptions from neighbors.

According to police, the 28-year-old man does not have a permanent residential address. On Friday evening, a judge granted a felony arrest warrant for the man, for one count of assault with intent to commit a sex offense.

The man was booked into the Santa Clara County Main Jail on that warrant and on a misdemeanor warrant out of Palo Alto for a minor municipal code violation.

The alleged attack occurred on Thursday evening south on Castilleja Avenue, near Churchill Avenue. Police said an attacker came up behind a woman who was walking south on Castilleja, put his hand over her mouth, pushed her into the bushes and began struggling with her on the ground, according to a news release issued Friday from the Palo Alto Police Department.

When the woman started screaming, the attacker began to punch her in the face repeatedly, police said. Neighbors heard the screams and stepped outside, prompting him to run away east on Miramonte Avenue and turn south on Mariposa Avenue, police said.

Police were notified about the attack just after 6 p.m. on Thursday and conducted a neighborhood search with a canine, according to the news release. They could not find the attacker.

The alleged attacker was arraigned on Thursday afternoon in the Palo Alto Courthouse where he was appointed a public defender and issued a no-contact order, according to the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office. He remains in custody without bail and is scheduled to return to court on Feb. 22 for a plea hearing.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call the department's 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413. Anonymous tips can be emailed to paloalto@tipnow.org or sent by text message or voicemail to 650-383-8984. Tips can also be submitted anonymously through the police's free mobile app, downloadable at bit.ly/PAPD-AppStore or bit.ly/PAPD-GooglePlay.

Palo Alto Weekly Staff Writer Gennady Sheyner contributed to this report.

Editor's note: The Weekly's policy is to withhold the names of those arrested for most crimes until the District Attorney has determined there is sufficient evidence to file charges in the case. See our guidelines here.

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Comments

2 people like this
Posted by Donald
a resident of Crescent Park
on Dec 22, 2018 at 8:56 pm

[Post removed.]


25 people like this
Posted by good job PAPD
a resident of College Terrace
on Dec 22, 2018 at 9:26 pm

I'm very impressed with how quickly the PAPD solved this crime. Did the suspect have a previous record of similar crimes. The article says "According to police, the 28-year-old man does not have a permanent residential address." [Portion removed.]


2 people like this
Posted by who
a resident of Duveneck School
on Dec 23, 2018 at 8:22 am

Who is the man?


14 people like this
Posted by Kojak
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Dec 23, 2018 at 8:52 am

From the earlier PA Weekly account:

>The woman could only describe the suspect as a male of unknown race wearing jeans and a black backpack, police said.

From today's PA Weekly article:

>> I'm very impressed with how quickly the PAPD solved this crime.


Based on the initial description provided by the victim, probably wasn't a good idea for anyone to be wearing jeans and carrying a black backpack around Palo Alto for the past two days.

Were the K-9 officers able to rely on their police dogs to confirm the suspect by scent? In other words, the suspect obviously came into physical contact with the victim so were there confirmable traces of his smell?



23 people like this
Posted by RE Agent
a resident of Portola Valley
on Dec 23, 2018 at 9:53 am

Unfortunately these random crime incidents will have a growing impact on Palo Alto residential property values and insurance rates.

Since Palo Alto is now considered an affluent midpeninsula suburb, it attracts
criminal activity emanating from outside areas. Thefts at Stanford Shopping Center are a prime example and due to the various ease of access escape routes (e.g. Embaradero/Oregon/University to 101), residential burglaries and street assaults will become more common. The PAPD can only do so much in terms of patrol.

Like Beverly Hills, some of the more expensive neighborhoods in Palo Alto may have to consider hiring private security patrols to ensure both personal safety and residential burglary prevention.

It's becoming a sign of the times and another consideration that many of my wealthier Chinese client/investors are taking into full account. So instead of actually moving into the exclusive PA homes they have purchased, some are opting to reside in other cities known for having fewer safety threats...like LAH, Los Altos and some of the nicer parts of Cupertino near the southern Los Altos border.



14 people like this
Posted by resident
a resident of Community Center
on Dec 23, 2018 at 10:52 am

I think it is funny that the newspaper refuses to publish the names of arrested people, but they are happy to publish a link to the police press release that has his name and mug shot.


23 people like this
Posted by Nothing new
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Dec 23, 2018 at 11:01 am

Nothing new is a registered user.

@RE Agent - "Since Palo Alto is now considered an affluent midpeninsula suburb" Palo Alto has been "an affluent midpeninsula suburb" for a LONG time. This isn't new. The escape routes aren't new. Street assaults are not new. (Bert Kay was beaten to death downtown in 1997). Heck, Chinese moving to Cupertino is not new.

According to PAPD website, violent crimes (assault, murder, rape and robbery) are down or essentially flat from 2009 and 2010. Burglaries, are actually decreasing from their high in 2012. The crimes that have increased are larceny-theft , theft and auto theft, which are non-violent in nature. (Rape/attempted rape is also higher, however.)

The facts tell a different story than what you portray.


22 people like this
Posted by One Of Your PA Neighbors
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Dec 23, 2018 at 12:27 pm

> According to PAPD website, violent crimes (assault, murder, rape and robbery) are down or essentially flat from 2009 and 2010. Burglaries, are actually decreasing from their high in 2012. The crimes that have increased are larceny-theft , theft and auto theft, which are non-violent in nature. (Rape/attempted rape is also higher, however.)

> The facts tell a different story than what you portray.

@ Nothing new...
According to your reportage...if 'rape' was down in PA from 2009-10, and 'rape/attempted rape' currently higher, then something has gone awry over the past six years.






Burglary alarms and electronic surveillance may have curtailed some potential residential burglaries but this doesn't necessarily mean that outside efforts towards those ends have decreased.

As far as PA affluence and Chinese residency in Cupertino not being new...of course. But there is even more affluence in PA and Cupertino/Monte Vista have now become predominantly Chinese residential communities.

So yes...nothing is new, just reaffirmed.


10 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Dec 23, 2018 at 1:14 pm

Just as in medicine, advances in microbiology and DNA analysis will change the face of policing. In the future, such crimes are going to be harder and harder to get away with.

I'm guessing people had security camera footage. Nice work PAPD!

Thankful the neighbors for responding as they did.


7 people like this
Posted by Howie
a resident of Barron Park
on Dec 23, 2018 at 3:27 pm

[Post removed.]


5 people like this
Posted by municipal code
a resident of Barron Park
on Dec 23, 2018 at 4:14 pm

From the PAPD site: "[the suspect] was also booked on a misdemeanor warrant out of Palo Alto for a minor municipal code violation." What was this other violation??


7 people like this
Posted by RE Agent
a resident of Portola Valley
on Dec 23, 2018 at 4:53 pm

[Post removed.]



17 people like this
Posted by shane246
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Dec 23, 2018 at 5:45 pm

This politically correct rag won't name the suspect or print his mugshot. here is the official police report with name and photo. Web Link


6 people like this
Posted by CameraMan
a resident of College Terrace
on Dec 23, 2018 at 7:38 pm

One of the way to feel a little safer around the town is to encourage people to place cameras around their houses. There are now many web-enabled security cameras that can continuously monitors the area. If there is a motion, the camera sends a video to a free cloud service and also emails the resident. The resident can later review the videos and potentially capture criminal activities. Crime goes with poverty and half of the world population is under poverty (i.e. live under $2.5 a day)


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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