Police: DNA Evidence Links Rape Suspect to 7 Other Sexual Assaults - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Police Say DNA Evidence Links Rape Suspect to 7 Other Sexual Assaults

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San Diego police said they have DNA evidence that links a Tierrasanta businessman and father accused of trying to rape a Mission Valley resident to seven sexual assaults in the city over the past year.

Thomas James Parker, 39, was arrested Wednesday after he allegedly confronted a 33-year-old Mission Valley woman in her garage, threatened her with a knife and grabbed her.

The Escala Circle resident screamed and fought back, and the assailant fled.

Parker -- a married father of two young children and co-owner of It's a Grind Coffee House in Little Italy -- was captured by police at a shopping center a few blocks away with help from passersby, including two off-duty Border Patrol agents.

Genetic evidence implicates Parker in at least three of seven home-invasion sexual assaults and robberies that began in June 2008, San Diego police said during an afternoon briefing.

The assaults occurred in Carmel Valley, Tierrasanta, the College area and near UC San Diego, as well as Mission Valley.

Based on DNA evidence and other similarities in the assaults, authorities said they plan to charge Parker with all seven assaults.

Most of the victims were young Asian women, and in all of the attacks, the assailant demanded money before sexually assaulting the women, police said.

Getting the man responsible has been a high priority for the San Diego Police Department.

"Our efforts paid off yesterday when (the) victim decided she was going to fight back against her attacker," said SDPD Capt. Jim Collins.

Parker is scheduled to be arraigned Monday.

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