ESCONDIDO — Police are searching for more possible victims from a sexual assault suspect who was a driver for ride-sharing companies.
Jeremy George Vague, 37, of San Marcos was arrested last week and pleaded not guilty to three felony counts and one misdemeanor charge on Wednesday at the Vista Superior Court.
He was remanded to custody on $260,000 bond, according to court documents.
Escondido police, meanwhile, held a press conference Wednesday detailing Vague’s suspected assaults on three women.
Lt. Justin Murphy said an 18-year-old Palomar College student hailed Vague in his blue 2014 Town & Country minivan through Uber to take her home. Instead, authorities allege Vague turned off the application and took the woman to an alternate destination where he sexual penetrated her with his hand.
“Jeremy Vague subsequently arrested at his home later the same evening,” Murphy said.
On Sept. 7, Vague was working for Lyft and is alleged to have assaulted two women, one who is 19, after taking pictures with them. He is accused of groping the women, which were college-aged, Murphy said.
According to Murphy, Vague picked up one woman, arrived at the destination as the other woman waited for a ride and assaulted them both.
“Uber and Lyft have been cooperating with investigators throughout the process and are providing information requested through the legal process,” Murphy explained.
Another female Palomar College student, meanwhile, avoided Vague’s attempt to lure her into his vehicle on Sept. 6 when she refused to accept a ride, Murphy said. He explained the woman had not used either Uber or Lyft to hail a ride.
“This female refused to get into the van and reported the incident to the Palomar College police department,” Murphy said. “Since there was no specific criminal violation during this incident, Vague was contacted and advised by police not to return to the campus.”
Both companies said Vague no longer works for them, according to media reports.
In addition, Vague played one season of college basketball at Utah State, according the team’s website, and coached girls basketball at Calvin Christian High School in Escondido for several years, according to reports.
He is an imposing figure, according to police, as Vague is 7-feet tall and weighs 270 pounds.
Due to the nature of the alleged crimes, police believe there may be more victims who have not come forward.
“Investigators believe there may be additional females in San Diego County who have not yet reported to police that they were victimized by Jeremy Vague,” Murphy added. “We hope you find the courage to come forward so we can hold Vague accountable for his actions.”
According to court documents, Vague is charged with felony counts of assault with intent to commit a specific crime, sexual penetration with use of force and false imprisonment and one misdemeanor charge of indecent exposure.
He is scheduled to appear in court on Sept. 30 and for a preliminary hearing on Oct. 5.
Any witnesses or potential victims are urged to contact Det. Damian Jackson of the Escondido Police Department at (760) 839-4932.
Steve Puterski covers Carlsbad and Vista. For tips or story ideas, contact him at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @StevePuterski.