published Saturday, August 24th, 2013

3 arrested in sex assault cases in the Chattanooga area

Police arrested three men Thursday on charges of sex crimes.

Chattanooga Police arrested 41-year-old Arun Patel after he reportedly grabbed the arm and breast of a woman at a business at 3400 block of Wilcox Boulevard.

The woman told police Patel had given her a cigarette, some gasoline and his telephone number on a piece of paper just before 9:24 a.m., according to the report. She said Patel then touched her breast.

The woman gave police the telephone number, and a another employee at the business showed police a surveillance video of the incident. The video reportedly showed Patel first talking with the women, then touching her breast.

Police arrested Patel and charged him with sexual battery. He left jail on a $2,000 bond.

Hours later Thursday, police responded to the 100 block of Manufacturer's Road after a woman said Jesus Armondo Cox, 37, got on top of her and tried to pull her pants down while she was in his tent.

The woman said she was hanging out with Cox and his girlfriend while her boyfriend was getting some food. She told police she had been drinking and smoking marijuana, according to the report.

After Cox's girlfriend left the tent to get some cigarettes the woman told police Cox climbed on top of her. She said he pulled her belt off and tried to remove her pants. Cox's girlfriend then reportedly returned and punched the woman's face.

The woman said she fled the tent and called police.

Chattanooga police found Cox, and he reportedly told them the woman consented to the interaction.

He was arrested on a charge of sexual battery. Cox remains in jail on a $3,000 bond.

Patel and Cox will appear Sept. 5 before Hamilton County Session Criminal Court Judge Gary Starnes.

Hamilton County Sheriff Deputies arrested Florencio Mendoza Cruz, 36, on a charge of rape stemming from a Dec. 2, 2012 case.

A woman told police then she had been drinking with friends at a house at 4117 Auburn Hills Drive and she fell asleep on a couch. She said when she woke up, her pants had been removed and she was bruised. After a rape investigation analysis was completed by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, deputies arrested Cruz and charged him with rape.

Cruz will appear Sept. 9 before Hamilton County Sessions Criminal Court Judge Christie Sell. His bond is set at $10,000.

about Louie Brogdon...

Louie Brogdon began reporting with the Chattanooga Times Free Press in February 2013. Before he came to the Scenic City, Louie lived on St. Simons Island, Ga. and covered crime, courts, environment and government at the Brunswick News, a 17,000-circulation daily on the Georgia coast. While there, he was awarded for investigative reporting on police discipline and other law enforcement issues by the Georgia Press Association. For the Times Free Press, Louie covers Hamilton County ...

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