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Man accused in roadside attacks on women ordered to stand trial

A Cotati man accused in a series of nighttime assaults on women driving Sonoma County roads was ordered Thursday to stand trial.

Evidence presented in a preliminary hearing for Thomas Boccaleoni, 44, was sufficient to support charges on two of three attacks that occurred last year and in 2008, Judge Ken Gnoss ruled.

Gnoss will rule Monday on whether Boccaleoni will be held to answer for a Jan. 6, 2009 assault on Calistoga Road.

Boccaleoni, a former Marin County chef, is accused of faking roadside emergencies to compel women to stop on the side of the road where he could molest them. Victims testified he drove behind them, flashed his high-beam lights and then fondled them after they pulled over. Two women said he threatened to kill them if they didn't comply.

Boccaleoni was identified in court by one victim. He was linked to another assault by DNA evidence, prosecutors said.

He is charged with eight felonies including genital penetration, assault with intent to commit rape and false imprisonment.


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