A Corona del Mar man is in police custody after barricading himself in a Cameo Shores home, and detectives are currently at the scene to investigate allegations that the man kidnapped and raped a woman early today.
Police said a neighbor called about 3 a.m., reporting that some people were running through the yard, said Sgt. Steve Burdette. Officers headed to the scene and stopped a car, and a woman said she’d been on a date in the 4600 block of Camden Drive when the man refused to let her leave and raped her.
The woman’s friend had gone looking for her and helped her escape through a window, Burdette said. The victim was taken to Western Medical Center-Santa Ana, he said.
When police went to the suspect’s home, he refused to answer knocks on the door or telephone calls, Burdette said.
“At that point in time, we brought in our SWAT team,” Burdette said.
Nine houses were evacuated to the sides and above the suspect’s home, and Camden Drive and Brighton Road were closed. SWAT team members patrolled the other streets in the beachside neighborhood, and a police all-call went out to residents advising them of the situation.
“This morning, I opened my garage to put my kids in the car, and there was this cop loading a gun,” one neighbor said. “I said, ‘Should I close my garage?’ And he told me to close the garage.”
Other neighbors said they could hear officers using a loudspeaker or bullhorn to order the man to come out with his hands up.
Police escorted some nearby residents from the scene and advised others to stay home with their doors locked. The situation was safe at all times, but if the man tried to escape, police wanted to make sure people were not in harm’s way and that officers were prepared, Burdette said.
The man was in his parents’ home, and they were not there during the incident, Burdette said. Hostage negotiators arrived at the scene, and police could see the man walking around inside the home. He did not appear to be armed, and he was not behaving in a threatening manner, Burdette said.
Finally, at 9:50 a.m., the man saw a SWAT officer and made contact, Burdette said.
“They talked, and he gave himself up,” Burdette said. “He gave up without a fight.”
More than 40 police officers were at the scene, including Police Chief Jay Johnson. The police SWAT vehicle, a fire truck and ambulance also were stationed at the command center.
The man has been arrested and could be booked on suspicion of sexual assault and kidnapping, police said. He added that the man was known to police, who had several previous contacts with him.
“It was no isolated,” he said. “We were familiar with him and not in a positive light.”
Police did not disclose the victim’s condition.
The streets were expected to be reopened this morning.