Man arrested for luring and sexually assaulting men in his apartment

Tobias Bartee. Photo provided by Escondido Police Department

By Gina Yarbrough 

Escondido, CA–An Escondido man was arrested on suspicion of luring multiple men to his apartment and sexually assaulting them, the Escondido Police Department said.

Over the past four months, Escondido police were alerted to four different adult males who had been lured to an apartment in the city.  

The men had talked with another man through the Grindr App and agreed to meet. Each of the victims stated the man gave a fake name and posed as a white male on Grindr. When the suspect, 28-year-old Tobias Bartee, a black male, answered the door the victims were told that the fictitious white roommate was not at home. The victims were then forcibly restrained and sexually assaulted. Two of the victims witnessed the suspect with a handgun, Escondido police said in a news release.

On September 15, Escondido police detectives, assisted by members of the SWAT team, served a search warrant and arrested Bartee at his residence. He was charged with kidnapping with intent to commit rape, sodomy by force, oral copulation by force, assault with intent to commit rape and strangulation.

According to Escondido police, Bartee was using photographs of other people and portraying them as himself. 

The Escondido Police Department is urging anyone else who may have been a victim of Bartee to contact Detective Santaniello at (760) 839-4768. 

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