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Lake Highlands Serial Rape Suspect Has Disturbing History

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(credit: KTVT/KTXA) J.D. Miles
J.D. is an award-winning reporter who has been covering North T...
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DALLAS (CBS 11 NEWS) - A man accused of sexually assaulting three women in Dallas may have preyed on women in department stores months earlier.

A disturbing background is emerging about suspected serial rapist Cesar Benitez.

Plano Police say the 33-year-old was captured on video in April 2012 being confronted by store security after walking out of the women’s restroom at this Kohl’s on Highway 75.

“He did take off running and he left out of the building before we were able to detain him,” says David Tilley, Plano Police Department.

Police were later able to identify Benitez, and a month later, he was arrested for another bathroom peeping incident at a Target store in Allen.

A police officer there relayed a description to a patrol officer in Dallas who a year later matched Benitez to a sketch of the man responsible for three recent sexual assaults in Lake Highlands.

“A year ago I had no idea who this guy is or was or anything,” says Geoff Pettay, Dallas Police Officer. “Just his name and about 5’9, and a description of him.”

Benitez is in the Dallas County Jail charged with three counts of Aggravated Sexual Assault.

Plano Police could still prosecute Benitez for this department store incident if someone comes forward who encountered him in the bathroom.

“There’s a potential that possible after seeing the video having more attention the more recent Lake Highlands incidents that took place this individual might remember being a party here and contact us,” says Tilley.

Benitez has reportedly given a confession to the Lake Highlands rapes and his DNA has been linked to the crimes.

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