CRIME

U. police arrest man suspected of sexual assault

Aug 9, 2018, 7:10 AM | Updated: 8:03 am
Armando T. Lopez is accused of sexually assaulting a young girl in the ER waiting room at the Unive...
Armando T. Lopez is accused of sexually assaulting a young girl in the ER waiting room at the University of Utah Medical Center. (Salt Lake County Sheriff's Office)
(Salt Lake County Sheriff's Office)

SALT LAKE CITY — University of Utah Police arrested a man they say sexually assaulted an 11-year-old girl.

Campus police say the man sat next to her, while she was coloring, in the emergency waiting room at University Hospital, and inappropriately touched her twice.

She told her parents.

“Our security and our police responded, we were able to locate the suspect with the father, and we were able to take that person into custody,” said campus police chief Dale Brophy.

He adds, unfortunately, a crime like this could happen anywhere.

“This is an isolated incident for us,” Brophy said, insisting the campus and the hospital are safe places. “We don’t have a lot of these types of crimes happening here at the medical center or on campus.”

Armando Tobias Lopez, 23, claimed to be in the waiting room as his uncle had a medical procedure. Brophy hasn’t verified that, but told the Deseret News Lopez does not work at the hospital and did not have an appointment in the facility during the time frame in question.

A University statement read: Nothing is more important to us than the safety and well-being of our patients, staff and visitors. We are deeply concerned. Our executive leaders have been in touch with the family to offer support.

Any victim or anyone who witnesses sexual abuse or sexual assault can get help at any time of the day or night, using Utah’s statewide 24-hour Rape and Sexual Assault Crisis Line at 888-421-1100. Trained advocates staff the hotline seven days a week.

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