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Former Santa Barbara gas station employee arrested for rape

An 18-year-old Santa Barbara man was arrested on Halloween for allegedly raping a 34-year-old woman from Goleta.

Investigators with the Santa Barbara Police Department say that on October 27 at 3:37 a.m., Josue Emanuel Torres let the victim use the restroom at the gas station he worked at on the 300 block of W. Carrillo Street. Moments later, Torres caught the woman using illegal drugs.

Investigators say it was at that point when Torres allegedly coerced the 34-year-old into having sex with him under fear of having her arrested for using the illegal drugs.

“The victim, fearing arrest and the possibility of going to jail for the drug offense and a violation of probation, acquiesced to Torres’ demand,” said Sgt. Riley Harwood with the Santa Barbara Police Department.

Two days later, SBPD officers drove to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Carpinteria station to speak with the 34-year-old victim, whose name was not released.

A forensic medical examination was arranged for the victim, and authorities put her in contact with an advocate from the Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center.

Torres was arrested on Oct. 31 shortly before 12:30 p.m. at his home in the 1100 block of Castillo Street. He was booked into Santa Barbara County Jail and charged with rape by means of duress or fear. His bail is set at $100,000.

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