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Man accused of raping 19-year-old arrested

Police say Christopher Gonzalez Cruz arrested by US Marshals in Polk County

Booking photo of Christopher Gonzalez Cruz
Booking photo of Christopher Gonzalez Cruz

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – A man accused of having sex with a 19-year-old against her will in Gainesville was arrested by the U.S. Marshals in Polk County Monday, the Gainesville Police Department said.

Christopher Gonzalez-Cruz, 24, was booked into the Polk County Jail and is awaiting extradition back to Alachua County.

According to the Police Department, just after midnight on Sept. 11, officers responded to Northwest 28th Terrace to assist University of Florida police after a man ran from a traffic stop.

The man, later identified by police as Cruz, met the victim inside the Grog House bar Saturday night, police said.

Investigators said they left the bar and went to the vehicle to "make out."

While inside the vehicle, Cruz forced the woman to have sex against her will, according to police. She began yelling for help, and investigators said that's when Cruz sped off.

UPD saw the speeding vehicle and pulled Cruz over. They said he didn't stop right away, but eventually stopped on Northwest 28th Terrace. Cruz immediately ran off.

Air support and K-9 teams were called in to help locate the man, but were not successful.

The U.S. Marshals Florida Regional Fugitive Task Force in Gainesville requested the FRFTF office in Tampa for assistance in locating and apprehending Cruz.

GPD issued a warrant for Cruz's arrest on kidnapping and sexual battery charges.

Marshals from the Gainesville office believed Cruz was fleeing to Winter Haven, where he had relatives.

Marshals also advised Cruz should be considered dangerous, and likely to flee if given the opportunity.

Utilizing investigative resources available to the Marshals service, GPD was able to determine that Cruz was likely at his brother's house on Shirley Court in Eagle Lake.

Surveillance was conducted on the location and Cruz was seen arriving on a motorcycle listed in the original bulletin from Gainesville, police said.

Cruz was seen leaving the residence and entering the passenger side of a vehicle. As the vehicle approached the intersection of Shirley Court and Cooley Road in Eagle Lake, Marshals pulled the vehicle over and took Cruz into custody without incident, police said.

Police learned that Cruz also had an additional violation of probation warrant for trespassing and burglary by the Florida Department of Corrections.

Cruz’s family members who were present at the time of his arrest were interviewed at the scene and stated they had no knowledge Cruz was wanted.