DALLAS — The search for suspects who raped an SMU student last weekend led police to a southeast Dallas neighborhood off Jim Miller Road and Red Bud Drive.
Ruben Moontiel also saw SWAT officers near his home on Red Bud Saturday afternoon while he landscaped his front yard.
No sooner had he gone inside to tell his wife police were suiting up outside when SWAT kicked in his front door.
"I felt humiliated," Moontiel said.
His wife, Agueda, said Dallas SWAT officers rushing into her home trampled over her foot and fractured it.
DPD detained the entire family for four hours, keeping them outside.
Finally, detectives had Agueda Moontiel's black 2001 Chevy Tahoe impounded. That was particularly inconvenient for the family because their SUV has a special seat in it to transport their three-year-old disabled son, Ruben Jr.
But police say they were acting in good faith while investigating the SMU student's rape.
The three men who raped the 20-year-old woman miles away left the scene driving a dark SUV. Plus, DPD traced the rape victim's cell phone to Moontiel's street, where there are a half dozen similar vehicles.
But detectives zeroed in on his home because his family's 2001 Chevy was previously owned by a sex offender.
Detectives contacted SWAT with promising evidence, but police concede that detectives were wrong.
"It's one of those fine lines," explained police spokesman Lt. Andy Harvey. "We're trying to get bad people off the street, so -- unfortunately -- sometimes mistakes are made. But our intention is always in the right place."
DPD's SWAT doctor examined Agueda Moontiel's foot at the scene, but she refused treatment, Lt. Harvey said.
The family provided records that show Methodist Hospital later found fractures in her foot costing the Moontiels $600.
Their house now needs repairs, too, from SWAT kicking in the front door.
Late Tuesday evening, Dallas Police had the Moontiel's black SUV towed back to their house after discovering it had a flat tire while in DPD's custody at the impound lot.
Lt. Harvey said Ruben Moontiel, 33 -- who cleans office buildings for a living and has no criminal record -- is not a suspect in this crime. Police readily admit that this was a case of mistaken identity.
As it always does, SWAT provided paperwork for the Moontiels to file a claim against the city. But since police were on the job looking for violent criminals, Dallas isn't obligated to pay the family a dime.