Man convicted of sexually assaulting college student near ASU

A man has been convicted of sexually assaulting a college student near Arizona State University's Tempe campus nearly three years ago.

The attack happened at about 5 a.m. on Oct. 17, 2021, when the victim was walking from her apartment to work between ASU's Packard parking structure and the Hyatt House Tempe near Veterans Way and 6th Street.

"The suspect grabbed the victim from behind and held a metal knife-like object to her throat," police said. "The victim was then taken to an unknown location near Packard parking structure, where the suspect sexually assaulted her."

Following the assault, the suspect fled the area. No weapons were found at the scene.

DNA found at the crime scene identified Eric Bell as the suspect. He was arrested days after the assault.

eric bell

Eric Bell was convicted of sexually assaulting a college student near ASU's Tempe campus in October 2021.

During his trial, Bell represented himself. He was found guilty of five counts of sexual assault and one count of kidnapping.

"These cases are already challenging enough, even when the defendant has his own lawyer," Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell said. "When the defendant is representing himself, my lawyers must work doubly hard to ensure he doesn’t make mistakes that would jeopardize a conviction. I’m particularly proud of this team who took all that into account and still made sure he will go to prison where he belongs."

Bell, 33, is scheduled to be sentenced on May 9. He could face more than 25 years in prison.

Map of where the assault happened