Phoenix/ Crime & Emergencies
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Published on April 21, 2024
Phoenix Fire Department Engineer Faces Accusations of Multi-Decade Sexual AssaultsSource: Facebook/Phoenix Fire Department

A Phoenix Fire Department veteran was arrested on accusations of multiple sexual assaults, after three women, all connected to his department in various ways, came forward with allegations that span nearly two decades. Jonathan Alexander Estrella, 50, who serves as a Fire Engineer, faces severe charges that put a grim spotlight not only on his actions but also raise questions about the inner work of the institution that ought to embody trust and service.

According to FOX 10 Phoenix, one incident dates to October 13, 2006, where a female co-worker, after being plied with drinks by Estrella, claimed to have lost consciousness and later woke up to Estrella sexually assaulting her. She was "in and out of alertness, and recalls not having control over her body or being able to move," court documents said. Despite the victim's report and the provision of evidence, the case was never prosecuted at the time by the Maricopa County Attorney's Office.

Fast forward to December 9, 2023, Estrella was allegedly involved in two more incidents at a bar near Camelback Road and Loop 101 Agua Fria Freeway, as detailed by 12news. One woman accused Estrella of leading her to his truck under pretenses before molesting her. She claimed to have resisted, but her efforts were to no avail until the assault was "interrupted".

In a disturbingly similar fashion, on the same night, another woman came forward with the accusation that Estrella provided her with cocaine and proceeded to intimately touch her against her will and with a force that left bruises. The assault continued "for an extended period of time," and only stopped because her friends called, looking for her, as per FOX 10 Phoenix. Estrella declined to be interviewed but purportedly went as far to apologize to both women via Instagram direct messages shortly after the attacks.

Estrella was taken into custody on April 18, and the Phoenix Fire Department issued a statement in response to the allegations, saying they are taking the matter seriously and have placed Estrella on administrative leave. "The Phoenix Fire Department takes all allegations against our members seriously as we strive to serve the community with the highest level of customer service," the agency wrote. With these charges, including potential charges of sexual assault, attempted sexual assault, and kidnapping, the community watches as justice attempts to reckon with a trusted servant's alleged betrayal.