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USC students allegedly assaulted by bus driver

December 9, 2009 | 10:52 pm
A 21-year-old bus driver suspected of sexually assaulting at least one of two USC female students during a bus ride was arrested Tuesday, police said.

Daniel Charles Elliot was booked on suspicion of sexual battery and is being held in lieu of $25,000 bail, according to a Los Angeles Police Department statement.

Police said the attack occurred last Saturday when two USC students were walking about 3:30 a.m. in the 3100 block of Figueroa Boulevard. The two young women, who were not identified, were approached by a bus driver, later identified by police as Elliot, the statement said. The women told police the bus driver offered them a ride to their home. Believing he was an official driver of a USC transportation vehicle, the women said they accepted the ride, the statement said.

But when the bus came to a stop at the two students' residence, Elliot allegedly refused to let them go and instead told them to dance for him. He at least sexually battered one of the two young women, police said. Both women later managed to escape after they attracted the attention of a passerby, forcing Elliot to open the doors and let them out.  

After following up on several tips and leads, LAPD detectives and members of the USC Department of Public Safety established probable cause to believe Elliot had committed the sexual battery.

-- Ruben Vives