AUSTIN (KXAN) — The owner and manager of an EZ Food Mart has been arrested after a series of alleged sexual assaults that happened since March, according to an arrest affidavit.
The victim told Travis County Sheriff’s Office investigators she was hired by the suspect, 54-year-old Rahim Momin, in early March. She said she worked in the kitchen of the taqueria in the EZ Food Mart.
According to the affidavit, the EZ Food Mart in question is located along U.S. Highway 290 southwest of Austin near Cedar Valley. The victim said her typical shift was 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The victim is a Spanish speaker, and she said due to the language barrier Momin used a Google Translate app to communicate with her during work and each assault.
Investigators say the victim told them of four separate incidents of sexual assault.
March 27 incident
According to the arrest affidavit, the victim told investigators the first incident occurred on March 27 after she received a text from Momin around 7 p.m. The victim told investigators that in the text Momin asked her to return to the store because he needed help after another employee left.
According to the affidavit, the victim was driven to the store by her nephew around 8:30 p.m. She said when she entered Momin turned off the open sign and the store lights. She said she could tell Momin had been drinking.
The victim told investigators Momin made her grab a six-pack of beer and bring it into the kitchen. According to the affidavit, once in the kitchen Momin made her take a drink. She said she refused but saw Momin was holding a knife which she said he then used to gesture for her to take a drink.
Momin then brought her to a room on the second floor of the store, the victim told investigators. She said once there Momin took off his clothes and forced her to perform oral sex. She said Momin then pushed her to the floor and forcibly had sex with her which she said caused her a great deal of pain.
March 30 incident
According to the arrest affidavit, the victim told investigators the second incident occurred on March 30 just after she had finished her 2 p.m. shift. She said as she got into her car she noticed Momin sitting in the vehicle next to her motioning that she roll down her window. She said he told her to meet him behind the store by the dumpsters.
The victim told investigtors when she got there, Momin told her to get in his car. She said once she was in the vehicle, Momin told her to perform oral sex. She said she told him no stating to him that there were people and security cameras around. According to the affidavit, Momin told her that he was the only one who looked at the security footage. The victim said she then realized Momin was again holding a knife.
The victim told investigators Momin then led her inside the building and brought her upstairs. According to the affidavit, the victim told investigators there were workers in the building, but that Momin told her they wouldn’t say anything. She said he brought her behind a partition and forced her to perform oral sex. The victim said after the workers left Momin brought her into another room and made her have sex with him.
March 31 incident
According to the arrest affidavit, the victim told investigators the third incident occurred on March 31 at around 3 p.m. after her shift. She said after her other coworker left, Momin locked the front door and turned off the open sign. She said he was again holding a knife and made her go upstairs.
The victim said that once they got upstairs Momin forced her to perform oral sex. She said he then pushed her to the floor and forced himself on her.
April 3 incident
The victim told investigators the fourth assault happened April 3. She said she received a text from Momin to come into work around 5:30 a.m. because the other kitchen worker wasn’t coming in.
The victim said she delayed getting to work and when she arrived she sat in her car, too afraid to go inside. She said Momin then came to her driver’s side window and told her to come into the store.
According to the victim, once she was inside Momin again was holding a knife and made her go to the upstairs room. Once in the upstairs room, the victim said Momin assaulted her in a similar fashion as the other three incidents.
The victim told investigators that after the assault, Momin told her to clean herself up since they had to open the store soon. She said Momin told her he did not like her rejecting him and that he wanted her to be more forthcoming. The victim said she then went to work, but made up an excuse that her child was sick and had to leave.
Investigators say the victim told them she felt coerced to go along with Momin’s demands not only because he had a knife with him, but also because he continually threatened to report her to immigration authorities.
According to the affidavit, investigators obtained a search warrant for the EZ Mart on April 16. During the search, Momin agreed to an interview with investigators. Investigators say Momin denied all the allegations of sexual assault and claimed the victim was flirting with him but he didn’t respond since he doesn’t speak Spanish. Investigators say Momin also denied ever having a knife or threatening to report her to immigration authorities.
Investigators also spoke with another employee at the EZ Mart. The co-worker said he thought it was weird how Momin would call the victim in at odd hours. He said she told him Momin was sexually harassing her and that she would not be returning to work because she was scared of him.
Investigators say they recovered a knife from behind the EZ Mart cash register which the victim identified as the one Momin threatened her with. They also found DNA samples from bodily fluids in the second floor where the alleged assault happened.
Investigators say several findings from Momin’s cell phone corroborate the victim’s account of the incidents, including usage of the Google Translate app on March 27 starting at 8:30 p.m. They also said the iPhone Health App showed that Momin climbed a flight of stairs on March 27 at 9 p.m. and again on March 31 at 2:58 p.m. which investigators say is consistent with the victim’s recounting of events.
According to the affidavit, Momin called authorities on April 21 to “tell the truth.” During the interview, investigators say Momin told them he and the victim had sex three times. He claimed they had been flirting with one another for a while and that the days they had sex roughly matched the victim’s memory. Investigators say Momin told them, “she kept coming to me. I never took her clothes off. She took all her clothes off. She did everything by herself.”
Momin told investigators he did not tell the truth earlier because he was nervous and confused, according to the affidavit. When asked why he thought the victim would make up stories about him, police say Momin told them “I don’t know, maybe she wants money from me.”
Momin was arrested and charged with aggravated sexual assault. He has since bonded out of the Travis County Jail.