RIALTO (CBSLA) — A registered sex offender has been arrested for a series of violent attacks against women on the Pacific Electric Trail in Rialto.
“He would hold them at knifepoint, demand their phone and then he would try to sexually assault them,” said Lt. Cameron Nelson of the Rialto Police Department.
According to Nelson, even though the suspect, 33-year-old Christopher Dandeneau, a known sex offender, did sexually assault a woman, Rialto police chose not to notify the public.
“We know once we go public with it, he’s probably gonna go underground. But we wanted to make sure we made the arrest,” explained Nelson.
Nelson explained, “we were comfortable that we could keep the public safe,” while they searched for Dandeneau.
According to Nelson, undercover officers canvassed trails in the area all day searching for Dandeneau, eventually identifying the direction in which he reportedly fled.
Police used a suspect sketch and security video to alert people in nearby areas.
They were able to locate Dandeneau at a nearby trailer park and an ankle monitor, mandated as part of his parole, proved he was at the scene of all of the attacks when they happened.
Three of the attacks occurred on the trial, while one happened near a Jack in the Box on Foothill Boulevard. All took place between May 2 and May 6.
People who regularly walk the trail said they wished police had notified the public of the attacks.
Rialto resident Erica Moore told CBSLA’s Nicole Comstock, “I probably would have been more alert.”
Dandeneau was on the sex offender registry for indecent exposure. He is now being charged with kidnapping and sodomy.
Police believe there could be more victims and are requesting them to come forward.