VIDEO: Man hailed as hero after rescuing woman being sexually assaulted outside his El Cerrito home

 

EL CERRITO (KRON) — A Good Samaritan came to the aid of a woman being sexually assaulted in front of his home in El Cerrito.

Police had released an image of the suspect hoping someone out there recognizes him. And on Thursday night, the suspect has been identified as 28-year-old Mario Hills.

The man who helped the woman in distress described what happened to KRON4.

“I was getting dressed in the morning. I just got out of the shower, still in my boxers and T-shirt. I had no shoes on, and I heard a scream,” Brett Guest said.

It was the voice of a woman being attacked allegedly by the man caught on a surveillance photo, according to Guest.

It happened Tuesday just before 7 a.m. near the driveway of his home on Stockton Avenue at Balra Drive in El Cerrito. 

Guest came outside to see what was going on.

“Female on the ground with a man on top of her and her pants were around her knees,” Guest said. “He was manhandling her and trying to strip her clothes off.”

“This was an extremely violent crime,” El Cerrito police Lt. Robert De La Campa said.

Lt. De La Campa says the victim was out for a morning run when the attempted sexual assault occurred.

“Residential area, very nice neighborhood,” he said. “She went out for a little morning exercise, safe to say it’s probably the last thing she expected to happen.”

Fortunately, it happened in front of Guest’s home.

“Chased him around the corner and into the front yard of another house,” Guest said. “He ran into the bushes and was able to escape.”

But police now have a suspect.

“Based on the photograph, we believe that he is an African-American male…balding in the center with some very long hair on the side,” Lt. De La Camp said. “These areas tend to have auto burglaries and things like that, but this was a very violent crime, but not for the intervention of the neighbors, it certainly would have been worse we believe.”

The suspect, Hills, of San Francisco, has a $100,000 warrant for his arrest. He will be charged with assault with attempt to commit rape.

Police say he may be using BART to get around.

“I just did what I hope anyone would have done for me or my family,” Guest said.

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