Share this story...
Latest News

Idaho prisoner on work crew battling Utah fire charged with rape

FILE PHOTO -- Burned trees from the Coal Hollow fire on Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018. (Ravell Call, Deseret News)

INDIANOLA — An Idaho prison inmate brought to Utah as part of a work crew fighting the Coal Hollow Fire is facing rape charges after he allegedly attacked a woman at the fire’s base camp.

Prosecutors say Ruben Hernandez, 27, had been flirting with the victim throughout the day of the assault and attacked her after she tried to get him to stop.

“It’s quite clear from my reading of the evidence that this is a strong case, that a crime was committed,” says Sanpete County Attorney Kevin Daniels.

As part of the work crew from the St. Anthony Work Camp in St. Anthony, Idaho, prisoners are required to have no violent history. This earns them a level of trust and less strict supervision.

Daniels says, “There was nothing that would have indicated that he was a risk to do something like this.”

The woman contacted security guards immediately after the alleged attack and pointed Hernandez out after the crew was lined up, according to charging documents.

“It’s our intention to see the victim has some degree of justice for what occurred,” Daniels says.

Hernandez will face one count of felony rape in Sanpete County before returning to Idaho.