A San Diego man faces charges of rape, kidnapping and torture after answering online escort ads and attacking two women, bringing with him a taser and hatchet, police said.
On Wednesday, a 30-year-old woman jumped off the balcony of her apartment on Fenton Parkway in the Mission Valley area of San Diego to avoid an attacker.
At first, investigators believed it was a home invasion. Now, police say the woman was a paid escort, and the suspect, Brendan Mathis, was there for an appointment.
Lt. Chuck Kaye with the San Diego Police Department Sex Crimes Unit says this is the second escort attacked in this manner this month.
Mathis is the suspect in both incidents.
Investigators told NBC 7 that Mathis went to the apartment Wednesday in response to an online escort ad. When the victim opened her door, Mathis used the taser on her and tried to tie her up, officers said. That’s when the woman fought back.
“She was able to push away and run from him, and that's when she went to her balcony and jumped,” SDPD Lt. Steve Behrendt said.
Mathis was arrested outside the victim’s apartment. His hatchet and taser, held in a blue shoulder bag, were confiscated by police.
“Once officers contacted him, he was cooperative,” Behrendt said.
Investigators are also looking for Mathis’ computer.
Several weeks ago, investigators say Mathis made a date with a different escort in Mid-City.
She was attacked in a similar fashion, but did not manage to escape, officers said.
Mathis is being held without bail on charges of rape, kidnapping and torture. If convicted, he faces life in prison.
One Mission Valley resident, who wished only to be identified as Julz, says such a service is a stain on the whole community in a neighborhood that is considered safe
“That's just putting a lot of people at risk. Not only herself but just a dangerous place all around,” Julz said.