Police say 39-year-old Jose Luis Capacete of Baldwin Park targeted undocumented residents and prostitutes who may be fearful about reporting a crime.
He was arrested after allegedly raping and sodomizing a 23-year-old woman on Christmas Eve. Police allege Capacete followed her from a house party in Santa Ana. She was walking to a store when he allegedly forced her into a van, threatened her with a gun, knife and Taser, and then drove her to a location behind a rental place in the 1600 block of North Harbor Boulevard.
"He binds her, strips her and sexually assaults her," said Santa Ana Police Cpl. Anthony Bertagna.
After the assault, police allege Capacete dumped the naked victim on the side of the road and threw clothes on top of her. Police were able to collect a piece of evidence that was tied up in the clothing.
"That evidence is what led our detectives to this suspect," Bertagna said.
Two hours later, Carroll Harren had just arrived at work when he saw the victim.
"All of a sudden, a young lady appeared ... crying and screaming that she had been raped and dropped," Harren said. "I had a blanket in the back of my car ... you could tell she had been traumatized."
Police served a search warrant on Capacete's home in Baldwin Park and found three guns and a Taser, as well as other undisclosed evidence that links him to at least six other victims. The crimes go back to at least one year.
Capacete works as an armored car driver for Brinks and had a route in Orange County. According to authorities, he went through the police academy, but he did not find a job as a police officer.
In 2009, Capacete pleaded guilty to agreeing to engage in prostitution in Westminster. He was sentenced to 10 days in jail and three years probation.
Capacete was booked at the Santa Ana Jail and is being held without bail.
Police are concerned there may be additional victims who fear coming forward. Anyone with information is urged to call Crime Stoppers at (855) TIP-OCCS.