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Provo Police arrest suspect accused of sex assault in Rock Canyon

Posted at 9:14 AM, Nov 13, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-13 20:26:34-05

PROVO,  Utah - Police have arrested a suspect accused of sexual assault in Rock Canyon, 34-year-old Wayne Ray Leas.

Police said Leas allegedly sexually assaulted a 21-year-old woman after he trapped her in a public restroom at the Rock Canyon Trailhead in Provo and threatened her with a large knife last week.

Provo Police say the victim and her friend were able to provide a good description of the suspect, which led to a quick arrest.

On Friday, police released a sketch of the suspect.

“In this case we had a victim and a witness who gave very clear and compelling descriptions and then when we're able to put both of those people together with a police artist and ask for help of the public, we put it together very quickly,” said Lt. Brian Taylor, Provo Police Department public information officer.

The sketch came in handy for BYU Campus Police.

“BYU's police department dispatched some officers on Thursday night the 9th around 11 p.m. To a report of a suspicious person,” said Lt. Taylor. Campus police found Leas hiding in the bushes on campus. He had a knife on him.

“There are three officers over there Officer Acosta, Officer Denning and Sgt. Strong who not only do what police do when they responded, they went the extra step of thoroughly documenting that person`s name and his address and date of birth,” said Lt. Taylor.

Leas told them he lived near the Provo Temple. On Friday, when campus police received the sketch, they made the connection and the victim and her friend confirmed the identity of the attacker as Leas. He faces charges of forcible sexual abuse and aggravated robbery.