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Santa Barbara Man Arrested on Second Rape Charge

Kenechukwu Denzel Ugwueze
Kenechukwu Denzel Ugwueze

A former Santa Barbara City College student suspected of raping of an 18-year-old woman in his Mesa home this fall has been arrested on a second charge of rape in a separate incident that allegedly took place three days prior, according to police.

Kenechukwu Denzel Ugwueze, 18, who resides in Santa Barbara but is formerly of Corona, California, was arrested Sept. 11 at his home in the 1400 block of Pacific Avenue in Santa Barbara, when he was charged with rape by force.

The victim in the case is an acquaintance of Ugwueze, according to Sgt. Riley Harwood of the Santa Barbara Police Department

The crime allegedly took place on Sept. 1, and 10 days later, a $100,000 warrant was obtained for Ugwueze, along with a search warrant for his residence.

The case was first reported by the Channels, the Santa Barbara City College student-run newspaper.

Now, police say a second alleged victim of Ugwueze has come forward.

That case was discovered when police Det. Chad Hunt was reading through the Channel’s article comments, one of which stated that the suspect had assaulted at least one other woman at SBCC.

Hunt ultimately was able to interview the second alleged victim, who reported meeting Ugwueze over social media and stated she had been forcibly raped at his Mesa home on Aug. 28, Harwood said.

Ugwueze had posted bail from the original booking and subsequently had been transported to Riverside Juvenile Hall, but after the Nov. 13 arrest, he was booked into the Santa Barbara County Jail.

Earlier this fall, SBCC spokeswoman Joan Galvan confirmed that Ugwueze was enrolled as a SBCC student in the fall of 2015 semester, but is not currently enrolled.

“The college currently is investigating this incident and federal education privacy laws prohibit us from disclosing any further information until that investigation is completed,” she said.

Ugwueze’s is due back in Santa Barbara Superior Court on Dec. 7 for hearings in both cases, according to prosecutor Von Nguyen of the Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s Office.

Noozhawk staff writer Lara Cooper can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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