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Police arrest suspect in Lakewood sex assaults

LAKEWOOD, Colo. – Police have arrested the man they say is connected to the string of sex assaults that occurred in Lakewood on Dec. 18.

On Friday, evidence led police to arrest 36-year-old Eric Jay Garcia for two counts of criminal attempt sex assault, unlawful sexual contact and two counts of third-degree assault.

The first assault took place at approximately 7 p.m. in the 7600 block of West Colfax Avenue. Police said the woman was walking to her car when the man sexually assaulted her. The woman was able to fight him off, and watched as he fled in a blue minivan.

Just 20 minutes later, the suspect followed another woman in the 1900 block of South Kipling Parkway. However when the male assaulted her, she sprayed him with pepper spray and managed to escape the attack. The suspect then stumbled off, according to police.

On Saturday, Lakewood Police confirmed Garcia is also a person of interest in an assault on December 10th, when a woman reported being molested after a car accident on W. Dartmouth Ave. Garcia has not been charged with that attack, but police are still investigating the incident.

Friends of the Garcia family describe the 36-year-old as a quiet and friendly neighbor.

“Nobody’s really had a problem with him, I don’t know what his history is, that’s none of my business, I don’t care,” said Mildred Floyd, who is a friend of the Garcia family.

A Colorado Bureau of Investigation background check found Garcia has been arrested multiple times for previous incidents including assault, grand theft auto, and larceny.

If anyone else has any additional information about this case or Eric Garcia please contact the Lakewood Police Department at (303) 987-7111.