Tempe police arrested a Mesa man Friday morning on suspicion of molesting a 12-year-old girl on a Valley Metro bus earlier this week.
Officer Brandon Banks said tips began pouring into the Tempe Police Department within 30 minutes after Valley news stations broadcast surveillance video from the bus. Banks said Chris Risley, 44, was arrested at 12:10 a.m. on suspicion of felony child molestation and booked into the Tempe City Jail.
“The Tempe Police Department would like to thank the Media for their assistance in getting a dangerous criminal off the streets,” Banks said in a prepared statement.
He also complimented the bus driver for his “quick thinking and heroic actions” in confronting Risley after the girl stood up and complained.
Banks said Risley boarded a Valley Metro bus on Rural Road in Tempe at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday and sat across from a 12-year-old girl on her way home from school. As the bus continued north on Rural Road, Banks said the suspect moved to an open seat next to the girl and touched her inappropriately.
Banks said the girl went to the front of the bus and told the driver what had happened. The driver then asked Risley to come to the front of the bus.
Banks said Risley exited the bus and walked east from Rural Road on University Drive.
Tempe detectives recovered video surveillance from the bus and made it available to several media outlets, including evtrib.com, in hopes that someone would recognize the unidentified suspect.
“This is a great example of a community working together to ensure the safety of its citizens,” Banks said in a prepared statement.