POMONA (CBSLA.com) — Arraignment was postponed to Wednesday for a gang member accused of repeatedly raping an El Monte store clerk.

Joseph Lee Amaya allegedly approached a store clerk, a 19-year-old college student, as she was working the night shift at Peck Mini Mart, 4164 N. Peck Road in El Monte. Amaya left, but prosecutors say he returned to attack the clerk as she was closed the store for the night.

According to prosecutors, Amaya forced his way back in as she tried to lock the doors, then barricaded the entrance and dragged the young woman to the back of the store, where he repeatedly sexually assaulted her.

Amaya has been charged with two counts of forcible rape and three counts of sexual penetration by a foreign object. The charges include an allegation that he kidnapped the victim to commit those crimes.

A joint effort by the U.S. Marshal’s Pacific Southwest Regional Fugitive Task Force and county Sheriff’s and Probation departments led to Amaya’s arrest in West Covina on Saturday.

Police say Amaya is a gang member with the initials of his gang tattooed on his right arm.

Amaya is being held on $5 million bail and faces a maximum sentence of 125 years to life in state prison.

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)


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