By Whitney Bermes Chronicle Staff Writer
2 hrs ago

A man who reportedly sexually assaulted a woman while in a car with three children at a Four Corners gas station will appear in court on the charge this morning.

Arturo Valerio-Gonzales, 46, was arrested Monday morning and charged with misdemeanor sexual assault.

Early Monday, the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office issued a news release seeking help locating Gonzales, who had reportedly fled from the scene of the alleged assault. Later that morning, he was taken into custody without incident.

Gonzales is also being held on retainer for the U.S Department of Homeland Security Immigration and Customs Enforcement because he is reportedly in the U.S. illegally.

According to charging documents:

At about 2:45 a.m. Monday, a woman called 911 to report that Gonzales sexually assaulted her while they were pulled over to rest at the Town Pump in Four Corners.

The woman and her three children had been traveling with Gonzales, who was a friend of the family’s, to Utah when they decided to get some rest at the gas station.

The woman said she fell asleep and shortly after, she felt Gonzales’ hand brush her breast. She said she rolled away from him and fell back asleep before being awoken a short time later with Gonzales assaulting her.

The woman said she immediately removed his hands from her and confronted him. Gonzales reportedly told the woman that she was just dreaming. The woman said she told Gonzales to get out of the car but he refused. She then drove up to the front of the gas station and called 911.

Gonzales begged her not to call law enforcement then fled the area when he learned she had.

Investigators learned that Gonzales had called the woman’s husband, claiming to be in West Yellowstone and in need of a ride.

The phone number used to call the woman’s husband came back to a woman who lives about a mile from the gas station where the alleged assault occurred.

The phone’s owner told investigators that a Hispanic man had come to her home asking to use the phone and that he was still at the residence.

Gonzales reportedly told the woman that the people he had been riding with did not want to pay him and kicked him out of the car. The woman heard him tell someone while on the phone that he was accused of touching a woman, but he said “it was an accident.”

Deputies went to the home and took Gonzales into custody.

During an interview, Gonzales admitted to being in the vehicle with the woman and falling asleep after pulling over at the gas station. However, he denied touching her.

Gonzales said at one point the woman was crying and upset, but that he didn’t remember anything. He said he fled after he learned police were called because he was scared.

Investigators found that Gonzales, who has an Ogden, Utah, address, is an illegal immigrant from Mexico with no visa or U.S. passport.