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Clown Charged With Raping Child in California

Mar 28, 2011 – 6:24 PM
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Tori Richards

Tori Richards Contributor

SANTA ANA, Calif. -- A clown who works backyard parties and special events was charged today with multiple counts of child rape that could send him to prison for life if convicted.

Jose Guadalupe Jimenez, who goes by the nickname "El Tin Larin," is accused of grabbing a 12-year-old girl outside a Taco Bell restaurant in Fullerton, Calif., while he was in full clown makeup, then driving her to a school where she was raped inside the car, authorities said.

Guadalupe Jimenez is seen dressed as a clown in this photo provided by the Fullerton Police Department.
Fullerton Police
Jose Guadalupe Jimenez, who has been performing as a clown for at least nine years, was charged with child rape Monday.
The girl, identified as "Jane Doe," was then taken to a nearby motel parking lot and raped again. She escaped when her attacker went into the lobby to book a room, authorities said.

"Here you have somebody who has been arrested for the kidnap and rape of a 12-year-old child and he is putting himself in a position in a regular basis to be around young and very young children," Fullerton police Sgt. Andrew Goodrich told AOL News. "This is some of the most serious kind of investigations that we can undertake."

Jimenez, 41, of Anaheim, has been a professional clown on weekends for at least nine years and is a construction worker by day. He works in the Hispanic community and drives a black commercial van with his logo emblazoned on the front, along with numerous balloons.

This image provided by the Fullerton Police Department shows Guadalupe Jimenez of Anaheim.
Fullerton Police Department / AP
Police say DNA evidence linked Jimenez to the 2002 rape of a 12-year-old girl.
A YouTube video shows Jimenez at a backyard party acting as a ventriloquist with a clown puppet while the squealing laughter of children is heard in the background. One child is holding balloons twisted into various animal shapes. Another video shows him entertaining adults at a party in a park. In a third clip, Jimenez is trying to entertain a very young girl at her backyard birthday party. At all the events, he is wearing a customary oversized striped suit and red beanie cap.

The Jane Doe attack occurred in 2002 but wasn't solved. Police placed the rapist's DNA in a state database with the hope that the offender would some day be arrested for another crime and a match would be made.

Then in November, Jimenez was arrested on suspicion of abusing a relative's child, and he submitted a DNA sample in accordance with California law. The sample matched the 2002 victim. The 2010 case is pending.

Fullerton police staked out the home Jimenez shared with his wife and three sons to make an arrest, but the clown was never seen exiting the residence. On Friday, a relative left the house and was followed to another home where Jimenez was seen in the backyard. He was arrested and is being held in lieu of $1 million bail.

An arraignment scheduled for today was postponed until April 22.

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Police searched his house and seized dozens of clown costumes, shoes, masks, puppets, balloons, posters and the truck he used to drive. The items were displayed for the media.

"It's not unusual for people who want to molest children to have jobs that have access to them," Susan Schroeder, the Orange County district attorney's chief of staff, told AOL News. "I can't think of a more perfect job than a clown to do this. Someone with that much access, with that kind of intent is someone we have to watch out for. We doubt this is the first or only time he has done this, and we really need victims to come forward."

Police and prosecutors would like anyone with information about any other crimes to call either Fullerton police at 714-738-5327 or the DA's office at 714-347-8794.
Filed under: Nation, Crime
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