Homeless man arrested for rape of teen girl at knifepoint in Bell Gardens

A homeless man suspected of raping a 14-year-girl at knifepoint in Bell Gardens has been arrested, officials said. 

Police were able to make the arrest after they received a tip from a citizen who spotted the suspect, identified as Robert Nunez, at a homeless encampment near the 710 Freeway in Long Beach. After police officers arrived at the encampment Monday morning, Nunez was subsequently taken into custody. 


Robert Nunez / Bell Gardens Police Department

For investigators, they said it was imperative to get Nunez off the streets.

"It’s extremely important to get him off the streets. We don’t know what his capabilities are. We know what he’s being accused of and we know having him off the streets is important to everybody," Bell Gardens Sgt. Brett Benson said. 

RELATED: Man accused of raping teen at knifepoint in Bell Gardens on the run

Police launch a manhunt for Robert Nunez

The manhunt began Thursday when the teen victim of the alleged kidnapping and rape reported the horrific incident to police. 

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The teen said she was lured into a garage by two men who then tied her up before she was raped at knifepoint.

The second suspect was identified as 41-year-old Jaomir Perez.

Perez was located and booked into the Inmate Reception Center on a $50,000 bail, according to sheriff's inmate records.

"This is something she’ll never recover from. We are doing our best as an agency, as a community to try to help her as best we can. We just want the best for her and her family moving forward," Sgt. Benson added.

Part of Nunez’s description was a distinctive tattoo on his left cheek and that tattoo was covered up by a band-aid at the time of his arrest.

"Clearly it seemed like he knew he was being sought after and was doing whatever he could to conceal his identity," Benson said.

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