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Police: Man tried to rape woman in wooded area, said ‘devil’ told him to do it

A man accused of trying to drag a woman into a wooded area in East Austin and rape her on Monday has been charged with aggravated kidnapping.

According to an arrest warrant affidavit filed Tuesday, the man, identified in the report as 35-year-old Javier Cervantes, approached a woman from behind as she walked on the sidewalk in the 1100 block of Airport Blvd. and asked for her phone number.

The affidavit said the woman felt uneasy about the man, so she grabbed pepper spray from her bag and kept walking.

According to the document, the man continued to ask for her phone number, and eventually was about a foot away from her.

“As she continued walking she turned her head and asked him to please stay away from her (and) give her some space but he continued walking really close to her,” the document said.

Eventually, the woman asked Cervantes if she wanted him to call the police.

When she did, he told her that he would have sex with her before police got to her, and grabbed her from behind.

“The victim stated she tried to scream at first but no sounds came out of her mouth. She stated that she was strangled by the suspect’s arms and lost the ability to breathe correctly,” the affidavit said.


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The document said Cervantes was pulling the woman to a nearby tree line as he strangled her. 

He pushed her onto the ground and continued to drag her toward the trees when the woman was able to scream.

The document said two employees at a nearby pawn shop heard her cries and ran to help.

The employees grabbed the man and held him down until police arrived, the document said. 

According to the report, Cervantes told police he was trying to rape the woman.

After hearing that, officers immediately read him his rights and took him into custody.

“He was asked once more what happened and he replied to the officers that he was ‘trying to rape her,’” the affidavit said. “They asked him why and he replied he ‘didn’t know, the devil told me to do it.’”

Cervantes was booked into the Travis County Jail around 9:30 p.m. on Monday. His bail has been set at $75,000.

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