Parents on edge after man arrested for sexual assault in Sonoma

Bay Area

SONOMA (KRON) – A Sonoma County community is on edge as the sheriff’s office released new details about 49-year-old Jesse Granado-Lopez who is accused of abducting and sexually assaulting one middle school student and attempting to kidnap another.  

It happened Tuesday morning as the young students were walking to school. 

“I’m concerned, it’s not normal that we hear about these things,” Steve Raffaini said.

Questions and concerns on the faces of parents picking up their kids near Altimira Middle School in Sonoma on Wednesday. 

Steve Raffaini says his daughter usually walks home. 

“I’m just taking precautions by picking her up,” Raffaini said.

His daughter goes to a neighboring school but one that shares the same path where two young students were approached by Granado-Lopez. 

The first victim, a 14-year-old girl, told police he grabbed her at knifepoint, forced her into his car and sexually assaulted her inside before letting her go. 

“While we were starting to process that first case, the second 911 call came in from the second victim,” Lieutenant Andy Salas said.

Both victims were approached by Granado-Lopez at the intersection of El Dorado Drive and Railroad Avenue, just two blocks from their middle school. 

The second victim was able to run away and alert authorities.

Because of both their swift action, Granado-Lopez was found and arrested an hour and a half later, near the school. 

“I’m trying to understand why this would happen. Why a person, a male can do this?” Najah Gahoui said.

The school district did send a letter home and parents say they’re now talking to their kids about safety.

“We talked about walking together in pairs and not alone. It definitely happened on our path and so it’s shocking,”  Raffaini said.

“I think we’re looking at a life case on this one, we want to make sure we do everything right so this is the one and only with this person,” Salas said.

Granado-Lopez is in jail facing six felony charges and is being held without bond.

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