The 17-year-old arrested in Oxnard on Friday afternoon, September 28, for the previous night’s condominium burglary and rape in the 1100 block of Princeton Street, just north of Wilshire Boulevard in Santa Monica, appeared in court on Tuesday, October 1. He is being charged by the LA County District Attorney’s office as an adult. Bail has been set at $7 million, and he remains in custody.
He has been identified as Luis Mario Lopez from Oxnard, who was only two weeks shy of his 18th birthday at the time of the crimes. California law now allows prosecutors to charge anyone over 14 as an adult, without advance court approval, for certain crimes including rape. Lopez has been charged with multiple counts of rape, other sexual assaults, residential burglary, and grand theft auto.
A representative of the District Attorney’s office told the Mirror that if he is convicted, Lopez “is looking at multiple life sentences” for the crimes of Thursday night, September 27.
That night, a woman came home to her Princeton Street condo at approximately 10 p.m. and found a person ransacking her residence. Wielding a knife, he tied her up, sexually assaulted her, and kept her hostage in her own home for four hours before he left shortly after 2 a.m., taking her ATM card and car keys.
The woman was able to free herself, ran to a neighbor’s house, and called police, who responded at 2:20 a.m. “The victim was taken to a local hospital where she is in stable condition,” said SMPD Lt. Alex Padilla the next morning.
Police determined that the intruder had entered the woman’s unit by means of a doggy door.
At 4 p.m. on Friday, September 28, patrol officers from the SMPD with the assistance of officers from the Oxnard Police Department arrested Lopez in the 3500 block of La Costa Avenue in the City of Oxnard as he was driving the victim’s car, a 2003 Mercedes 500SL convertible. Evidence linking him to the crime was recovered from both the car and his residence.
At the October 1 court hearing, Lopez’s arraignment was put over to October 9, when a plea will be taken.