Registered offender tracked down for kidnapping

FRESNO — A registered sex offender was arrested for kidnapping and sexually assaulting a teenage girl after leading authorities on a chase through southeast and central Fresno Sunday.

Fresno County sheriff’s officials announced on Monday afternoon the arrest of John Manuel Ledesma, 41, who was booked into county jail two days after authorities first began investigating the allegations.

Shortly before 10 a.m. Friday, deputies were dispatched to a house located on the 2000 block of West Dennett Avenue, near the cross streets of Hughes and Olive Avenue in southwest Fresno. According to department spokesman Chris Curtice, the residence is believed to be the home of the teenage victim.

“The investigation revealed that Ledesma had allegedly kidnapped and sexually assaulted the minor,” Curtice said. “Deputies also learned that Ledesma was formerly on parole and a registered sex offender. I do not know when he became a registered offender.”

An all-points bulletin was broadcast for Ledesma and his red Volkswagon Jetta. Then, around 4:30 p.m. Sunday, deputies received information on Ledesma that led them to a residence located on the 5000 block of East Grove Avenue.

Several deputies, including a sheriff’s department helicopter, then pursued Ledesma as he drove the Jetta toward Minnewawa and Jensen avenues. When deputies attempted to pull him over, the suspect refused and the pursuit began.

Ledesma drove for several minutes in the southeast and central Fresno area before crashing into another vehicle. The collision occurred on the cross streets of Fruit and Yale avenues. Ledesma attempted to flee on foot, but was apprehended and tasered after trying to resist arrest in the backyard of one residence.

He was booked into county jail on several sexual assault-related charges, as well as for felony evasion and resisting arrest.

Registered offender tracked down for kidnapping was last modified: September 7th, 2011 by admin
Categories: Fresno

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Lorenzo Reyna

Lorenzo Reyna is a freelance crime reporter and sports writer in the Fresno area. He is the founder and owner of, which covers California State University, Fresno sports. Before creating the new website, he was a sports reporter at both and CSU Fresno's campus newspaper, The Collegian. You can reach him at