Three Sexual Attacks on Southern California Jogging Trails Have Been Alleged of a Cargo Pilot
Authorities said Monday that a professional cargo pilot from Riverside County was detained in Alaska and charged with sexually assaulting three women on jogging trails at an Aliso Viejo park over the last several months. Investigators were trying to figure out if he was connected to other incidents in Southern California and beyond.
Robert Daniel Yuccas, 51, of Cathedral City, is accused of raping one woman and attempting to sexually assault two others, according to law enforcement officials. He is being probed for possible offenses in Riverside and San Diego counties.
The three ladies were choked unconscious and carried into bushes at Woodfield Park in episodes that occurred between January 2020 and August 2021, in which he allegedly chose his victims at random. DNA evidence from two of the Aliso Viejo attacks, as well as an alleged assault in San Diego County, has been linked to Lucas, according to prosecutors.
Lucas, an Army veteran, was apprehended at an airport in Anchorage, Alaska, on Thursday after returning from China, according to authorities. Law enforcement investigators suspect there were other potential victims, either in Orange County or elsewhere, due to Yucas’ considerable travel as a freight aircraft pilot.
Authorities say Lucas works for Kalitta Air, a cargo airliner. Kalitta Air officials did not immediately reply to demands for comment.
Lucas is accused of three charges of kidnapping to commit a sexual offense, one count of forcible rape, one count of attempted forcible rape, and three counts of assault with the intent to commit a sexual offense. Prosecutors said they’re waiting for his arraignment in Alaska before moving forward with extradition to Orange County.
It was unclear whether he would face more charges in connection with the alleged crimes in San Diego and Riverside counties. According to Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer, Yuccas is thought to have picked his victims at random. According to the DA, the women did not know each other and were “randomly abducted” from the trial.