An Uber driver from Santa Maria was arrested Wednesday on charges of rape and burglary after detectives allege he targeted intoxicated females and escorted them into their San Luis Obispo residences before sexually assaulting them.
Following a lengthy investigation into two separate reports of sexual assault cases, which occurred in the early morning hours of Dec. 18 and Jan. 14 in San Luis Obispo, detectives identified Alfonso Alarconnunez, 29, as a person of interest.
On Wednesday, San Luis Obispo Police detectives served a search warrant at Alarconnunez’s home in the 2300 block of Cesar Chavez in Santa Maria. He was taken into custody after detectives allegedly found evidence linking him to their investigations.
Detectives believe that Alarconnunez allegedly used his position as an Uber driver to target intoxicated women. He would drive them home and allegedly escort them into their residences, where he would then sexually assault them, according to Capt. Chris Staley.
In both of these cases, it is also believed that Alarconnunez allegedly took cellphones, computers and jewelry from his victims.
“There were multiple victims identified in each of these cases,” Staley said.
Detectives believe Alarconnunez would search for parties in San Luis Obispo and solicit rides as an Uber driver. He would then collect payment through a Venmo pay service to disguise his identity.
Alarconnunez was booked into the San Luis Obispo County Jail on charges of rape of an unconscious victim, rape of an intoxicated victim, oral copulation of an intoxicated victim and residential burglary. His bail was set at $200,000.
San Luis Obispo Police detectives are continuing their investigation involving Alarconnunez, Staley said. Anyone who has information about Alarconnunez, or believes they were a victim of assault or theft, is asked to notify the appropriate law enforcement agency in their jurisdiction.
Staley also cautioned people requesting Uber or Lyft rides to confirm the identify of the driver and vehicle using the Uber or Lyft apps before getting in a vehicle. Payment only should be made through the Uber or Lyft companies and not through another pay service company.