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Police: 5-year-old crawls under stall, escapes sexual assault in Utah locker room

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Jonathan Soberanis mugshot. (Salt Lake County Jail)

LEHI, Utah (KUTV) — Officers with the Lehi City Police Department arrested a man after he allegedly sexually assaulted a 5-year-old child in the locker room of a recreation center in Lehi, Utah.

Jonathan Jareth Soberanis, 26, was booked into by the Utah County Sheriff's Office on June 2 after detectives with the special victims unit at Lehi City PD began their investigation into the case. Soberanis has a long history of exposing himself to children in public.

According to a police document, officers took the report of the 5-year-old child being sexually assaulted by an unknown man while he was unaccompanied in the rec center's locker room on June 1.

Police said the child told them Soberanis came into the bathroom stall where the child was. Soberanis proceeded to show the child his genitalia before sexually assaulting him, not allowing the boy to leave the stall, police said..

The child told police he had to crawl under the bathroom stall in order to escape the assault, he then called out to his mom for help. The boy's mother immediately alerted staff and they reached out to the police about the reported incident.

The following day, Lehi City PD started the investigation using surveillance footage of the described man entering the locker room.

Police said in their report the man is seen entering the locker room around the same time the child was there and exiting, using a different door, around the same time the child ran out.

This was when police identified him as Soberanis, who has a history of being arrested for lewdness, sexual abuse of a child, and lewdness involving a child.

It was later learned Soberanis had been banned from the center's property after an incident in 2015.

According to an affidavit of arrest, detectives approached Soberanis to question him about the latest incident.

Soberanis stated he had been at the recreation center at the time the incident occurred and stated he was there "working out".

Police noted in their report that surveillance footage showed Soberanis never touched any workout equipment.

When police informed him of the discovery, Soberanis claimed he couldn't remember what he did in the locker room.

Officers said Soberanis then resisted arrest after the interview, allegedly inflicting minor injuries on the arresting officers. During the scuffle, Soberanis allegedly tossed an end table at police.

Soberanis was arrested on suspicion of lewdness involving a child, criminal trespass with intent to commit a crime, unlawful detention of a minor, voyeurism against a child, sexual abuse of a child, resisting arrest, and assault against a police officer.

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