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Colton man arrested for sexually assaulting boy

A 19-year-old Colton man was arrested for sexually assaulting a young boy, and police believe there may be more victims.
January 22, 2014 12:00:00 AM PST
A 19-year-old Colton man was arrested for sexually assaulting a young boy, and police believe there may be more victims. The incident occurred on January 13, according to police, but the boy didn't tell anyone until four days later, and Lee Ortega was arrested the day after that. Investigators say the assault was brutal.

Colton Police say Lee Ortega lured the boy into an apartment at the Windrush Village Apartment Homes complex on the 1600 block of East Washington Street. The boy had just got off his school bus and was walking home when he was approached by Ortega, who lives in the same complex.

"Ortega grabbed his hand and forced him to go with him, saying that if he makes any noise or screams, he'll be hurt," said Colton Police Detective Ray Mendez.

Police say that once inside the suspect's apartment unit, Ortega sexually assaulted the boy. Ortega has been charged with kidnap, sodomy, lewd acts and oral copulation. Police say the attack lasted for close to 15 minutes.

"After the assault, the child ran home and went into his room and did not discuss it with anybody for fear of duress," said Ortega.

But he did tell his mother. A day later, Ortega was arrested. However, police say they're concerned about Ortega's behavior the past several months around the apartment complex.

"As we understand, he was known to loiter or hang out with other underaged juveniles at the complex," said Ortega.

Police say he even knew many of the children by name. They're worried he might be involved in other sexual assaults. Police hope if that's true, those victims will have the strength to come forward like the young boy in this case.

"He's very brave. I give him so much credit for coming forward and telling his mother about what had happened," said Mendez. "Yes, he was threatened, and he was told that if he told anyone, that more harm would come to him, so he's extremely brave, and just a courageous, brilliant little boy."

The age of the boy was not released, but police said he was younger than 14. Ortega was held on $500,000 bail and was scheduled to be arraigned Thursday.

If you have information related to the case, contact Colton Police at (909) 370-5020.