Police arrest suspect caught on video sexually assaulting homeless woman in Van Nuys

The Los Angeles Police Department arrested a suspect who was caught on security video attempting to sexually assault a homeless woman in Van Nuys.

The incident happened around 3 a.m. on September 15 near the intersection of Sepulveda Blvd. and Erwin St.

A woman was sleeping when a man walked up to her, woke her up and exposed himself to her.

Video shows the woman pushing him away; she grabs a cellphone, presumably to call for help. The man was then seen attempting to grab her feet but the woman kicks back and throws a bucket at him.

The suspect then walks away; however, he returns minutes later… this time without his pants or shoes and again exposes himself. 

The woman managed to get away. Police say she was taken to a hospital and later released. 

The suspect, identified by the department as 30-year-old Wilfredo Lemus of Panorama City, was arrested just a few days after the attack. Police credit community tips for his arrest. 

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Detectives say he worked at an elderly care facility in the human resources department. Authorities are working to see if anyone at the care facility was victimized by Lemus. 

During a press conference Friday, detectives stated that Lemus preyed on the vulnerable homeless community. The police department is encouraging anyone else who may have been victimized by Lemus to come forward.

Anyone with information is urged to contact the LAPD. Tipsters may also call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS.

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