OGDEN -- Fourteen years after an aggravated kidnapping and rape case went cold, police have a suspect in custody.
Sergio Arturo Hernandez, 42, was arrested and booked into Weber County Jail early Thursday morning for aggravated kidnapping, a first-degree felony.
Police suspect he is the man who grabbed a woman on her way to work and sexually assaulted her behind Mount Ogden Junior High School on Jan. 23, 1997.
On that day, the victim left her home on the 2700 block of Harrison Boulevard at 5:20 a.m. She walked south to work, and as she passed the school, she told police, a man grabbed her from behind and dragged her behind the school.
Her attacker bound her hands and told her he had a gun and would kill her if she resisted, according to an affidavit filed in 2nd District Court. He then raped her, the affidavit states.
The suspect ran away after the attack. The victim walked the remaining two blocks to work, her hands still bound, and a co-worker called police.
Police described the victim as "extremely upset, but (she) was able to describe what had happened," according to the affidavit. She also was able to describe the suspect as a Hispanic man with a mustache.
Investigators found footprints at the crime scene and collected DNA, believed to be the suspect's, from the victim as evidence. But without any leads after nine months, the case was declared cold and closed on Halloween.
It wasn't until July 11 of this year that Ogden Detective Rick Childress got a letter from a national DNA index system. The letter stated that the DNA from the cold case matched the DNA of a man who had been in Arkansas State Prison.
The case was reopened.
Arkansas deputies had arrested Hernandez in 2009 for domestic battering, false imprisonment and terroristic threats, which led to his imprisonment, according to the affidavit.
Childress discovered that, at the time of the attack, Hernandez's listed home address was about one block south of the victim's home, according to the affidavit.
He also found several old and current photos of Hernandez from law enforcement agencies, as well as the man's driver's license, all showing him with a mustache.
But during the reopened police investigation, Hernandez was in a Louisiana detention facility awaiting a deportation hearing.
Once his deportation was waived in September, the Weber County Attorney's Office filed an aggravated kidnapping charge against Hernandez in 2nd District Court.
On Wednesday, he was extradited from Louisiana to Weber County Jail and was booked early Thursday morning.
Hernandez has lived outside of Utah for a substantial length of time since the attack, which puts a toll on the statute of limitations for the suspected crimes.
The attorney's office could still viably prosecute Hernandez for aggravated kidnapping, according to the affidavit.
Court documents and an Ogden news release about the case do not mention or give an indication of the possibility of a rape charge.
If convicted for aggravated kidnapping, Hernandez would face up to life in prison.