The suspect, who has been identified as 45-year-old Alen Karaboghosian of Encino, California, was spotted pushing a female agent to the ground and bending over her as she screamed for help at an open house Sunday. As first reported by local outlets, Karaboghosian was arrested at the 5400 block of Lindley Avenue in Encino on suspicion of attack with a deadly weapon early Wednesday.
His bail has been set at $130,000.
The video, which has been shared widely in the real estate community, helped prompt the arrest. Two other local agents, who also chose to remain anonymous, recognized the man as someone who had also groped them at open houses. One of them said Karaboghosian rode his bicycle past one of their open houses several times and once grabbed her breast and ran off at an open house just before Father’s Day.
“When the guy took his hat off, I immediately recognized him,” one of the agents told NBC. “I was shocked he was so violent.”
All the agents targeted by Karaboghosian have chosen to remain anonymous. The LAPD believes that other victims exist.
In the wake of the incident, the brokerage where the agent in the video works — Keller Williams Porter Ranch — brought in a safety expert to train its agents in self-defense.
Office CEO Frank Bernardo, who worked as an MP in the Army before changing to real estate, also spoke at the training session and encouraged agents to have a friend accompany them to open houses, stand behind rather than in front of visitors on house tours and not hesitate to call the police or end a tour if something about a visitor feels wrong.
“They shouldn’t feel afraid to do their jobs, to have their career,” Bernardo said in condemnation of the attack.