A Ventura man accused of sex crimes with a minor killed himself following a police chase. Jonathan Hanks, 33, of Camarillo faced rape charges involving a 14-year-old girl he met through Snapchat. The man fled his apartment shortly before Los Angeles police arrived to arrest him.
Instead, police found themselves in the middle of a rush-hour chase on Highway 101. During the chase, Hanks’ car began drifting. He crossed all northbound lanes of the freeway before colliding with the center median.
When investigators approached the car, they found Hanks dead in the driver’s seat. They also found an empty bottle, which later tested positive for cyanide. The California Highway Patrol, which managed the chase, had been informed that Hanks planned to kill himself.
According to police, Hanks had no prior history of sexual offenses. The victim’s mother provided police with evidence to support the claim that Hanks had raped her daughter. Hanks met the teenager earlier this month at a Reseda motel.
Ventura sex crimes attorney
This case demonstrates the devastating effects of a sexual offense allegation. When you face sex crimes charges, hire an experienced sex crimes attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has more than 30 years of criminal courtroom defense experience. He takes sex crimes cases in Ventura County and throughout Southern California.
He does not judge his clients based on the charges against them. Instead, he works aggressively to fight for their rights and freedoms. Sex offense convictions are serious. They can lead to significant jail time, as well as lifetime sex offender registration. In addition, convicted sex offenders may have difficulty finding appropriate employment or housing, even years after their release.
Don’t assume there’s nothing you can do to fight sex crimes allegations. Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (805) 273-5611, (310) 456-3317 or (818) 591-2809 for an immediate consultation on your Ventura sex crimes case.
Photo Credit: Chris Guy, via Flickr.com