Man charged with two sexual assaults in Tacoma

Staff writerApril 8, 2014 

When Tacoma police found Vol Lam, his clothes were bloody and his knees and knuckles were scraped up.

Pierce County prosecutors said Lam’s injuries stemmed from sexually assaulting three women Saturday.

Lam, 42, pleaded not guilty Monday to second-degree rape and fourth-degree assault and was ordered jailed in lieu of $250,000 bail. He has not been charged in the third assault.

Charging papers give this account:

Police were called Saturday night to South 13th Street and Yakima Avenue by a passerby who heard a homeless woman screaming for help. The 48-year-old woman told the officers she had been sleeping on her bedroll when a man later identified as Lam woke her up, said he wanted to perform oral sex on her and then punched her twice in the face when she resisted.

The man managed to pull the woman’s jeans partially off before someone stopped to help and he fled.

Less than two hours later, officers were called to St. Joseph Medical Center where a 59-year-old woman told them she had been attacked while visiting her grandchild in the Hilltop area. She said her attacker grabbed her — ripping the buttons off her jacket — and tried to drag her to a nearby home where he said he wanted to perform oral sex on her.

She struggled to get free, but the man pinned her against a fence and sexually assaulted her. A passerby across the street heard her cries for help and intervened, punching the man in the face before he fled.

The passerby then walked the woman to the hospital.

Police said they later found a third woman who was also allegedly assaulted by Lam, who could not be immediately interviewed because of a language barrier, court records say.

Details of the third assault were not included in court records.

Police found Lam in the downtown area.

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