MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Maryland (WJLA) — Police have arrested an undocumented immigrant on allegations he hit, strangled and raped a woman at a Silver Spring apartment building. Kevin Mendoza, 26, is charged with 1st-degree rape, attempted 2nd-degree murder and 1st-degree assault.
Montgomery County Police say the victim suffered multiple injuries during the attack. Doctors told them the severity of her strangulation alone could've resulted in her death.
Shortly before midnight on August 16, the victim was walking through the apartment parking lot carrying items from her car when she noticed Mendoza following her. As the woman tried to unlock the door to the apartment building — located along the 8500 block of 16th Street — Mendoza allegedly grabbed her from behind and threw her to the ground.
When the woman tried to yell, police say Mendoza strangled her with his hands, nearly to the point of unconsciousness. When the woman tried to escape, Mendoza allegedly hit her in the face and head, and then raped her.
A Montgomery County Police investigation revealed that Mendoza was a former resident of the apartment building where he committed the crime. He was arrested around 10:30 am Monday, 3 days after the attack.
UPDATE: According to US Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Mendoza is a Honduran national living in the country illegally. On Tuesday, the federal law enforcement agency filed an immigration detainer against the 26-year-old.
Around 2 pm, August 21, Mendoza was taken to the Dennis Avenue Health Center in Silver Spring, Md. for a blood test, to determine if he's infected with HIV, AIDS, Syphilis, Hepatitis B and/or Hepatitis C.