California men accused of committing rapes, murder after being released on bail, reports say

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At least two California men are accused of committing heinous crimes after being released on bail for previous offenses, according to a local report.

Two men who were arrested this week in connection with separate crimes including sexual assault, murder and arson had recently been released on bail, according to reports from local affiliate FOX 40 and CBS Sacramento.

On Wednesday, Joseph Frank Pineda Pimentel was arrested and charged with raping a woman in Sonora just days after he was bailed out of jail in connection with a previous sexual assault arrest, CBS reported. 

Pineda Pimentel, a 37-year-old military veteran, was previously arrested on Sept. 2 on a separate of rape by force or fear, the Turlock Police Department said. According to police, his DNA was linked to the sexual assault of a homeless woman in June, when he allegedly “offered her a ride and told her he would ‘help her out.’” Instead, he drove her to the back of a closed business and forcibly raped her, police said.

Police learned in late August that the DNA collected from the victim also matched two more unsolved sex crimes cases in other counties, all of which involved similar circumstances, police said. 

Pineda Pimentel’s record also shows he was arrested and charged with rape in 2009 while he was in the military, but the case was dropped, police said. 

Meanwhile in Sacramento, 51-year-old Troy Davis was charged with murdering a Mary Kate Tibbitts, 61, after breaking into her home, sexually assaulting her, killing her two dogs and setting the house on fire, authorities said.

According to CBS and FOX 40, Davis was out on bail at the time of the Sept. 3 attack. According to FOX 40 he had been freed with no bail in June after being nabbed on charge of suspicion of stealing a motor vehicle. He was a no-show for his June 22 arraignment. 

Police say Davis and Tibbitts did not appear to know each other. 

Davis was arrested Saturday on a parole violation, when police identified him as a suspect in the murder of Tibbitts, who lived in Sacramento.

Davis has a lengthy criminal history in Sacramento and Santa Cruz counties, with cases dating back to 2013 that include charges of resisting an officer, battery on an officer, possession of methamphetamine, threatening an officer, misdemeanor sexual battery and assault and battery, the newspaper reported.

He was released from prison following felony convictions in 2017 and 2018 for assault with a deadly weapon and robbery. Following his release, authorities say he committed more crimes in June 2021 and then was released again.

According to The Sacramento Bee reported, Davis was described as a transient who initially showed up in Tibbitts’ neighborhood and was caught by a doorbell camera masturbating on a resident’s porch that Friday, before returning to the area and breaking into Tibbitts’ home.

The case has outraged the public and prosecutors, who blame legislators for weakening prosecutors’ ability to keep criminals in prison once they are convicted.

Tibbitts’ brother, George, told FOX 40 the “priority has to be public safety.” 

“This is not a new story. There are many victims of crimes committed by people out on bail,” George Tibbitts said. “And it shouldn’t happen. Particularly, one so gruesome, as happened to our sister.” 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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