On the 28th of August 2017, at approximately 7PM, the Hermiston Police Department responded to a call for service involving a 16-year-old female student athlete who reported to have been accosted by an unknown male while she was participating in a practice run in the area of SW 7th Street and W Quince Ave approximately 2 hours prior.
Around 10PM that night, the Hermiston Police Department pushed information out to the public on our Facebook page. That page was shared 540 times and over 32,000 people are believed to have viewed the information describing the unknown male as approximately 5’9” tall, with facial hair, noticeable tattoos, and driving a dark colored Toyota Prius.
Today our department concluded this investigation with the arrest of Joel Cardenas, 35 years of age, of 990 W Juniper Ave, Hermiston. Mr. Cardenas was interviewed by HPD detectives and later charged and lodged at the Umatilla County Jail in Pendleton on (1) count of Sex Abuse in the First Degree.
“This incident was very unfortunate for the victim, witnesses, members of this department and the entire Hermiston community. The actions of Mr. Cardenas are not indicative of what Hermiston normally experiences crime-wise, as our violent crime experience historically, is lower than like-sized cities. We believe there is a strong likelihood Mr. Cardenas has demonstrated this behavior in other incidents. If anyone has additional information or concern, they are encouraged to call 541-567-5519 and ask for the investigation unit.”
“Every member of this agency from the newest officer to seasoned veterans participated in this very disturbing investigation. Inasmuch as social media can be distracting with misinformation, calls and tips were made to our department from the Facebook post that assisted. I personally feel blessed to be a part of an agency that has the hard working dedicated women and men that we do.” stated Chief Jason Edmiston.