A Visalia man who police say uses social media to prey on victims is under arrest for sexual assault and burglary.
Chris Alvarez, 23, was arrested Monday at the Tulare County Jail, where he was being held on an unrelated crime.
Police said the sexual assault happened Nov. 30 when Alvarez went to the victim's home less than 24 hours after the two made contact via Grindr, Sgt. Amy Watkins said. Grindr advertises itself as a mobile phone service for gay men.
The victim, whose name was not released, told police that he asked Alvarez to leave when he showed up at the door about 4 p.m. But Alvarez forced his way in and bound and sexually assaulted the victim in his southwest Visalia home, police said. Alvarez stole property, and when the victim tried to escape, Alvarez pepper-sprayed him, police said. Investigators later identified Alvarez as the suspect and have since recovered some of the victim's property that was in Alvarez's possession.
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Police are asking anyone with information about the incident or similar incidents to call the Visalia Police Department Violent Crimes Unit at (559) 713-4234.
North Fork man faces molestation charges
A North Fork man was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of child molestation, the Madera County Sheriff's Department said.
The 62-year-old man was taken into custody at his home, where detectives seized a thumb drive containing images of child pornography and CDs, DVDs and memory cards of digital recordings, officials said.
Detectives believe the man knew his victim, who he had been abusing for five years. Detectives also believe there are more victims. The man faces charges of lewd and lascivious acts with a child under the age of 14, peeping and invading privacy with a concealed camcorder. His bail was set at $100,000.
Anyone with information is asked to call detective Zack Zamudio at (559) 675-7718.
Final ID wraps up Vernal Fall tragedy
A body found in the Merced River in Yosemite National Park on Saturday has been identified by park officials one of the three people who were swept over Vernal Fall in July.
The body of Ramina Badal, 21, of Manteca was found by a park ranger below the Vernal Fall footbridge, about a half-mile from the base of the waterfall, park spokeswoman Kari Cobb said.
Badal and two other people fell into the river and were swept over the 317-foot-high waterfall on July 19 while on a trip to the park with friends. She is the last of the three to be found. The body of Hormiz "Nenos" David, 22, of Modesto, was found Aug. 5 and the body of Ninos Yacoub, 27, of Turlock, was found Nov. 29.
San Joaquin boy to be tried as an adult
A 17-year-old boy will be tried as an adult for allegedly shooting a 91-year-old woman in her San Joaquin home early Thanksgiving morning.
The Fresno County District Attorney's Office announced Tuesday that Oscar Richard Soto will be tried in Fresno County Superior Court for the shooting of Marcela Miller. Soto will be tried for attempted murder, robbery, elder abuse and shooting into an inhabited home.
Soto's mother, Eugenia Valdez, 35, also was arrested as an accessory for her attempts to cover up the shooting. She remains in Fresno County Jail.
Quiroz sentencing delayed until January
The sentencing for Robert Quiroz, the former Marine who was convicted of second-degree murder in the beating death of his 3-month-old son five years ago, was delayed to Jan. 24 in Fresno County Superior Court to give him time to get his affairs in order.
On Oct. 31, a jury found Quiroz, 25, guilty of killing his son, Roman, and also found him guilty of fracturing his son's ribs, but acquitted him of breaking the boy's arm. He faces 34 years to life in prison.
Quiroz, then 20, was in the Middle East for only a few days when he learned that his wife, Candice, had suffered an aneurysm hours after giving birth to Roman on Aug. 21, 2006. Roman died of a massive blow to the back of his head on Nov. 18, 2006.
Tuesday, Quiroz's attorney, Michael Idiart, asked to delay his client's sentencing because Quiroz, who received money from his wife's life insurance, wants to set up a trust fund for his two daughters. Idiart said he also plans to use the extra time to get letters of support for his client for his sentencing.
Death penalty sought in Madera homicide
The Madera County District Attorney's Office said the death penalty will be sought for a man charged with stabbing and dismembering his two roommates last year while they slept.
Jeronimo Ramirez Martinez, 34, is accused of killing Delfino Martinez Hernandez, 41, and Fidel Hernandez, 20.
Police said Martinez killed his roommates, went to work and then reported their deaths to his landlord when he returned to their Madera home May 28, 2010.
The three men shared a garage converted into living quarters on the 900 block of Sierra Street.
Martinez has pleaded not guilty. His trial date is scheduled to be set Jan. 3.
Wood-burning restriction today
Wood burning will be prohibited in Fresno, Stanislaus, Kings and San Joaquin counties today, the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District announced.
The mandatory, daylong restriction began at midnight Tuesday and ends at midnight today. It applies to wood, pellets and manufactured fire logs, as well as outdoor fire pits and chimneys. Exceptions are if a home does not have access to a natural-gas source, or if burning solid fuel is the sole source of heat.
For more information, call (800) 766-4463.
Clovis restaurant has $80k in damage
Clovis firefighters are trying to find out what caused a fire early Tuesday morning at a Shaw Avenue restaurant.
The fire at Pho Delite, 393 W. Shaw Ave., caused about $80,000 damage. The cause had not been determined, but officials said it does not appear suspicious. No injuries were reported.
The fire was reported after an alarm company detected water flowing from the fire sprinkler system. Firefighters arrived within five minutes and made sure the fire did not spread to businesses in the same building.
Fish and Wildlife meeting today
The public is invited to a meeting about the California Fish and Wildlife Strategic Vision project from 5:30-7:30 p.m. today at the Caltrans Manchester Center offices just north of Shields Avenue.
State officials want to tell the public about the draft document for the project and get comments. The project will establish core values, goals and objectives for state wildlife agencies.