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Woman raped at knifepoint in Anaheim

August 11, 2009 7:32:42 AM PDT
A suspect is behind bars on Tuesday morning in connection to a brazen sexual assault in Anaheim. Police said the attacker entered the home along East Briarvale Avenue and assaulted a woman in her 50s at about 10:30 p.m. Monday.

The suspect has been identified as 44-year-old Dexter Tagudin Villanueva from East Anaheim. He was booked on suspicion of rape, sexual assault and false imprisonment. Police say Villanueva has no prior convictions.

Police said Villanueva snuck into the home through an unlocked door at the rear of the house. The victim was alone watching television at the time.

The victim was taken to a hospital to be examined. No word yet on her injuries.

Police acted on several leads and managed to catch up with the suspect early Tuesday.

"He went out the back door. We had a number of officers that swarmed into the area. We had a very intense search and we had of course our forensics investigators and detectives with an immediate response," said Sgt. Rick Martinez from the Anaheim Police Department.

Even with the suspect in custody, neighbors said they're still on edge.

"It's incredible, real scary, scares everybody in the whole neighborhood," said neighbor Jeff Rodas.

Police said the brazen suspect was an opportunist who took advantage of an unlocked door.

"This assault took place in a very nice, quiet residential neighborhood. Nothing really ever happens out there, and I think people get lulled into that feeling of security, and unfortunately, with these warm nights, people tend to leave their doors and windows open," Martinez said.

Authorities are urging residents to lock up.

"While we are quite content and secure in our homes, and especially if we live in an area that we believe is crime-free, we also have to always remember to secure your residence," Martinez said.

"You never know who could be out there looking."

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