Philadelphia

Accused Rittenhouse Rapist to Go on Trial for Sexual Assault, Burglary

The man accused of hunting down and raping a young doctor inside her Rittenhouse Square apartment remained behind bars Thursday after a Philadelphia judge set a new court date in the case.

Since his arrest in June, Milton Mateo Garcia has been held without bail.

Garcia, 28, stands charged with a bevy of counts related to the June 21 assault. On Thursday, Judge James DeLeon dropped kidnapping for ransom and robbery to inflict serious injury charges but held another 14 charges -- including forcible rape, sexual assault, theft, burglary, aggravated assault and false imprisonment -- for court.

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Investigators say the South Philadelphia man followed the victim as she walked home from a bar after a night out with friends.

Surveillance video shows a man, alleged to be Garcia, biking past the woman along the 1900 block of Spruce Street, locking up his cycle and then grabbing her from behind and leading her into an apartment building.

Police say Garcia then forced his way inside and repeatedly raped the doctor before stealing her smartphone and keys. Three days later, police took the restaurant worker into custody. Investigators said they found the victim's smartphone inside a bedroom at Garcia's home and her keys in his pocket when he was taken into custody, detectives said.

A Honduran national, Garcia was removed from the United States in June 2013, according U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) division. The agency has lodged a detainer against him to ensure they're notified before he's released from custody.

Detectives with the Special Victims Unit said they looked at whether Garcia was involved in any other assaults.

Garcia will be formal arraigned in October. 

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