Winston-Salem police charge man in assault of two WFU students

By Jacob McConnico
October 31, 2005

Winston-Salem police have charged Gilberto Cruz Hernandez of 385 Camden Ridge Drive in connection with four off-campus break-ins and sexual assaults, two of which involved Wake Forest University students. All of the incidents occurred last February.

Hernandez, 24, was arrested and charged Oct. 28 with four counts of first-degree rape, three counts of first-degree burglary and one felony count of breaking and entering in incidents that took place between Feb. 1 and Feb. 22 in Winston-Salem on Penner Street, Polo Road, Bethabara Hills Court and Commercial Plaza.

The two incidents that involved Wake Forest students include a Feb. 5 assault that occurred around 5 a.m. at a private residence on Polo Road, and a Feb. 17 incident that took place just before 6 a.m. at an apartment on Bethabara Hills Court at The Pines at Bethabara apartments. Wake Forest students were raped in both of those incidents.

According to an announcement by Winston-Salem police, Hernandez was arrested and charged after DNA evidence collected at a break-in in August connected him to the four sexual assaults. Hernandez is being held at the Forsyth County Law Enforcement and Detention Center in lieu of a $1.5 million secured bond. His trial date is Nov. 18.

An investigation into an attempted sexual assault involving a Wake Forest student that took place around 5 a.m. Feb. 5 on Crowne Oaks Circle at Crowne Oaks apartments is ongoing.