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Los Angeles County Firefighter In Jail On Suspicion of Sexual Assault

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Latest firefighter news

A 38 year-old Los Angeles County firefighter was behind bars today on suspicion of sexual assault, driving under the influence and possession of firearm near a school in El Monte, police said.

Richard Thomas Loken of Moreno Valley was arrested about 12:40 p.m. Wednesday at 2611 Portrero Ave., outside Portrero School, by El Monte police officers after police responded to a report of a suspicious person seen near the site of a sexual assault, El Monte police Sgt. Richard Luna said.

According to Luna, a woman was walking near Portrero school about 8:15 a.m. on Wednesday when she was grabbed from behind and sexually assaulted by Loken.

The victim then ran from the scene and reported the assault to a male witness, Luna said. Loken was spotted getting into a black Ford truck and driving away. The victim then notified school officials who called police.

El Monte police officers found Loken’s truck and made contact with the firefighter. While speaking to Loken officers allegedly saw a handgun on the truck seat next to him, Luna said. Loken was placed in custody.

Officers determined the gun was loaded, he said. They also found a Taser and handcuffs in the truck. Loken was then taken to the El Monte police station. There he was identified by the female victim as the man who assaulted her.

Officers determined that Loken was an L.A. County firefighter and Luna said the fire department was cooperating with the investigation.

Loken was scheduled to be arraigned on charges of sexual assault, driving under the influence and possession of a loaded firearm by a school on Friday at El Monte Superior Court, Luna said. He is currently being held in lieu of $55,000 bail, according to county jail records.

Anyone with information on Loken was asked to call El Monte police detectives at (626) 580-2114 or at tips@empd.org. All tips can be made anonymously.

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