Former S.F. firefighter suspected of sex assaults

Authorities are searching for a former San Francisco firefighter accused of sexually assaulting several women, using his badge to garner their trust.

Horacio Candia Jr., 48, is charged with three counts of forced oral copulation, one count of sexual battery, one count of making terrorist threats and another for false imprisonment, according to police.

The latest alleged incident happened Aug. 22 near 16th and Carolina streets on the border of San Francisco's Potrero Hill neighborhood. Candia reportedly used his badge to lure a woman into his car. The woman was able to escape and call authorities, but Candia is still on the lam, police said. A $500,000 warrant has been issued for Candia's arrest.

The embattled ex firefighter, described as being of Filipino descent, had a nearly nine-year career with the San Francisco Fire Department that ended in January of 2001, when he was fired for refusing to take a drug test, according to Lt. Mindy Talmadge. It was suspected that Candia had been intoxicated while on the job, she said.

Candia still has his badge, Talmadge said, because he had purchased it from The City when he had been promoted to the rank of Chief Operator several years before his firing.

“With all uniformed employees…when a person either retires or assumes a different rank, they are given the option of either relinquishing their prior rank badge or purchasing it,” Talmadge said.

Candia stands five-feet, five-inches tall, weighs 160 pounds and has brown eyes and a shaved head, according to police. He may be driving a green four-door 2001 Mitsubishi Diamonte, California license No. 5GSH121, or the vehicle may display paper plates.

Anyone with information is urged to contact the sex crimes detail at (415) 553-1361, or to call 9-1-1 if Candia is seen.

E-mail: maldax@sfexaminer.com

 

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