Santa Ana

Accused Cop Impersonator Charged With Raping Prostitutes Posts $1M Bail, Kills Self: Police

A man accused of posing as a police officer and raping two prostitutes was found dead in a Long Beach apartment after posting $1 million bail, police said Thursday.

Joseph Raymond Stanton, 42, was arrested on June 29 after evidence linked him to the rapes of two prostitutes and the attempted rape of a third, the Santa Ana Police Department said.

In each case, with one taking place in August 2015 and the others in January 2016, Stanton allegedly passed himself off as an officer and lured the victims to his car. He then drove them to a secluded location and raped them. One of the women was able to escape before he could sexually assault her, police said.

After his arrest, Stanton posted bail and was released the following day. Police went to a Long Beach apartment in the 1200 block of 3rd Street the day after his release from jail and found him dead in what appeared to be a suicide.

Stanton left behind suicide notes and had earlier mentioned he was contemplating taking his own life, police said. There was no evidence of foul play.

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