Inmate firefighter accused of raping woman at Coal Hollow camp

Ruben Hernandez


Inmate firefighter accused of raping woman at Coal Hollow camp


By Suzanne Dean




INDIANOLA—A woman working in the Coal Hollow Fire Base Camp was raped last week in one of the trailers in the camp, according to the Sanpete County Sheriff’s Office.

Ruben Hernandez, an inmate from the Idaho Department of Corrections, who had been brought in to help fight the fire, was booked into the Sanpete County Jail on Wednesday, Aug. 29, in connection with the incident.

According to Det. Derick Taysom, public information officer for the Sheriff’s Office, the victim said Hernandez had been flirting with her over the previous week.

On the day of the assault, she was inside a wash trailer when Hernandez entered. He asked for her phone number. In an attempt to get him to leave her alone, she gave him the number for a friend’s husband. That’s when Hernandez raped her.

The woman said she did not scream or try stop Hernandez, because she knew he was a prisoner and was afraid he might hurt her. She said she “froze” and didn’t know what to do. Following the assault, the victim went to a local hospital for an examination.

The victim’s name and role in the fire fight were not released. The case has been referred to the Sanpete County Attorney’s Office.