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Rocklin man arrested for kidnapping, sexual battery, impersonating firefighter

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A Rocklin man was arrested in the early hours of Jan. 5 after he allegedly kidnapped a woman who managed to escape from his vehicle.

Sgt. Eric Mattke with the Citrus Heights Police Department said a couple who had been out drinking Friday night befriended 29-year-old Rocklin resident Richard Perez and another subject at a bar in Citrus Heights. They offered to give the couple a ride home, but instead of taking them home, they took them to a restaurant. The man exited the vehicle while his fiancée remained inside, Mattke said, and when he came back to the vehicle, she told him she didn’t feel comfortable with the situation and they decided to run to their nearby home.

“They did take off running,” Mattke said. “They were chased by Mr. Perez, who chased after them in his vehicle. He cut them off in a parking lot across the street and brandished a firearm, and punched the boyfriend and forced the female into his vehicle.”

They drove a couple of blocks before the woman was able to escape the vehicle, Mattke said, although it is yet unknown how she managed to get away. Several witnesses called the police to report the incident, he added.

When police arrived, they located the vehicle and detained its two occupants, one of whom was identified as Perez, Mattke said. Perez was booked into the Sacramento County Jail at about 2:20 a.m. on charges of kidnapping and impersonating a firefighter, as he showed the victims a fake badge that he reportedly purchased off the Internet, and explained that as his reason for having a firearm, Mattke explained, although the only armed firefighter are arson detectives also sworn as police detectives.

Perez is also charged with sexual battery, for allegedly fondling the victim on top of her clothing, Mattke added.

The second subject was released without charges, Mattke said, although there could possibly be charges on him as the investigation continues. Mattke did not know how much Perez's bail was. He was not listed as in custody as of Thursday evening.

Mattke said it’s important for people to have their own designated driver, and to never accept rides from unknown people.

“A positive thing is they didn’t drive drunk, which is good,” he said of the couple. “However, they did place themselves in a bad situation.”