A desperate cry for help sent to Facebook via a pocket computer led to the arrest of a 42-year-old South St. Paul man suspected of sexually attacking the 12-year-old daughter of his ex-girlfriend.

The girl told police that her ordeal began shortly after 3 a.m. Saturday when Raymond E. Cesmat came naked into her room after shining a flashlight at her and tried to pull off her pants. He left after "she kicked him and screamed at him to leave her alone," according to a criminal complaint posted Thursday in Dakota Count District Court.

The girl had been living at Cesmat's rented Dale Place duplex with him and her mother. That night, her mother was away, staying with a new boyfriend.

After Cesmat left the room, she scrambled to find her iPod touch, used it to look for anyone logged onto Facebook and found someone -- the defendant's daughter -- who was able to get a message to her mother.

But even as the frantic girl pressed the send button, the alleged assailant, still naked, was back in her room, tearing off her clothes, climbing on top of her and sexually assaulting her as she kicked and scratched him, screamed and even threw books at his face, the complaint said.

Bleeding from her efforts, the defendant got up and said, "I will use you whenever I want," then left the room, it said.

The girl leapt up, slammed the door behind her and pushed her dresser in front of it, then climbed out a window and ran to a pay phone near a gas station, the complaint said. There she called her mother, who was already on her way to the duplex after having received the earlier message.

Once with her daughter, the mother called police and met officers at nearby Kaposia Elementary just before 5 a.m.

Cesmat has been charged with two counts of first-degree sexual assault, each punishable by up to 30 years in prison.

When police went to Cesmat's home, they found him with scratches on his stomach and arms and a cut finger that was "dripping blood" that he was sopping up with a paper towel. His mouth was bleeding. He told them that the girl had run away and "claimed that he cut his finger while looking for her" and that his mouth was bleeding "because he had dry lips," the complaint said.

Police also found blood, apparently from the man, on the bed where the girl had been sleeping and on her dresser.

Cesmat was arrested shortly afterward. He remains in the Dakota County jail in lieu of $175,000 bail.

Joy Powell • 952-882-9017