VENTURA : Ex-Carnival Worker Sought in Kidnaping

A former carnival worker is wanted for kidnaping a 23-year-old woman at knifepoint from the Ventura fairgrounds and sexually assaulting her near the Ventura River bed on the closing night of the county fair, police said Monday.

Ventura police Sgt. Roger Nustad said the man allegedly lured the Ventura woman to the fairgrounds about 10 p.m. Sunday on the promise of getting her a job dismantling the fair’s midway section.

But on the outskirts of the fairgrounds, Nustad said, the man pulled a knife on the woman and forced her to walk across a train trestle to the opposite side of the riverbed.

In the sand dunes near the mouth of the river, the woman was forced to perform numerous sex acts for several hours. During the attack, the woman was cut on the left side of her neck with a knife, although not deeply, Nustad said.


The assailant left the woman about 4 a.m., and she stayed there until it became light, said Sgt. Roger Nustad. She then went to her home where she called police.

Police have not identified the attacker, but officers believe he was fired as a carnival worker during the past two weeks. Sunday was the last night of the Ventura County Fair.

The woman described the man as being about 35 years old with tattoos on both arms and blond, collar-length hair, Nustad said. Police on Monday combed the river bottom for possible witnesses, but have not yet found any, he said.