Balboa Park rape suspect arraigned, faces 13 felony charges

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — Ismael Hernandez, Jr. was arraigned at the Downtown San Diego courthouse Wednesday in connection to a rape he is suspected of committing in Balboa Park.

Hernandez Jr., 27, is charged with 13 felony counts, including four of forcible rape and three of forcible oral copulation.

Hernandez is suspected of forcing a woman to follow him into Balboa Park at knife-point before sexually assaulting her. Reports indicate he then took her to another location and raped her a second time. The incident occurred Thursday, May 5 at approximately 10 p.m.

The San Diego Police Department arrested Hernandez Saturday night, and he was booked into jail early Sunday morning. Capt. Brian Ahearn held a press conference Sunday to discuss the latest developments in the investigation, which was aided by the public’s involvement in providing tips on the suspect to authorities.

A second victim came forward during the investigation, claiming that Hernandez attempted to rape her hours before the Balboa Park incident. The second victim claims Hernandez stalked her from outside of a business on 6th Ave. and Cedar St. The woman was reportedly confronted by Hernandez when she was walking toward her car, when he repeatedly began telling her, "don’t say anything."

The victim threw the food she purchased at the suspect to distract him before retreating back into the business to safety. 

Hernandez Jr. has been ordered to remain in custody in lieu of $5 million bail.

Categories: Local San Diego News