FRESNO COUNTY, Calif. (KGPE) – The Fresno County Sheriff’s Office has arrested a man they say is a brutal serial rapist. The suspect identified as 36-year-old Guadalupe Gonzalez from San Joaquin allegedly raped a woman earlier this week and authorities say he could be linked to past rape crimes.
Investigators say now that they have Gonzalez in custody they determined he was also responsible for two other rape cases dating back to 2017 and 2019.
Deputies also believe Gonzalez could be responsible for other unsolved rape cases in San Joaquin and throughout Fresno County.
Authorities say Gonzalez is in Fresno County Jail without bail after raping a woman in San Joaquin on Tuesday. The alleged victim told authorities she met Gonzalez online and agreed to meet him at an apartment.
“During their time together, Gonzalez took the woman’s cell phone, held a gun to her and forcibly raped her,” said Lt. Brandon Pursell from the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office in a press conference on Thursday.
Detectives say Gonzalez then allegedly drove the woman to a rural area of Fresno County in a tan Chevy Tahoe where he raped her once more, then left her by an orchard.
The victim said she called a friend to get a ride home, then later went to the hospital. The Sheriff’s Office says Gonzalez has a criminal history and has spent time in prison for assault with a deadly weapon in 2014. He was also arrested for rape in 2017, but charges were never filed.
Assistant Sheriff John Zanoni says the other rape cases linked to Gonzalez have a similar pattern to the case seen this week.
“All of these crimes that we’re talking about in 2017, 2019 and now in 2021 all occurred in the city of San Joaquin,” Zanoni said.
Pursell stresses safety when it comes to online dating, but emphasizes there is no excuse for rape to result after a consensual meeting between two adults.
“The reason that those crimes happen isn’t because of online dating, it isn’t because our victim met with him,” Pursell said. “It’s because he’s a rapist.”
Pursell and other investigators are now urging other possible victims or members of the public to come forward with any information about Gonzalez.
“We know that this can be a very embarrassing thing for victims, we know it can be a very shameful thing for victims. We just want to really want to plead with our victims to please reach out.”
The Sheriff’s Office is asking the public to contact Detective Jose Leon at (559 )600-8205 with any information on Gonzalez.