EL MONTE >> Police are seeking an unidentified child predator who they say has been lurking near El Monte elementary schools, offering rides and sexually propositioning young girls, officials said.
Police distributed sketches of the man and his car Friday in hopes of generating clues form the public.
Two incidents were reported Wednesday morning and Wednesday afternoon near Parkview Elementary School and Gidley Elementary School, respectively, El monte police Lt. Christopher Cano said in a written statement.
The predator was last seen about 3 p.m. Wednesday, about a mile south of Gidley Elementary School, at Valley Boulevard and Arden Drive, police said.
“The female student was walking home from school when the suspect drove his vehicle alongside her and sexually propositioned her,” Cano said. “The suspect continued to follow the victim as she continued walking. (The) suspect then stopped, exited his vehicle and approached the victim.
The frightened girl ran away, and the man returned to his car and drove off.
Another girl reported a previous suspicious encounter with the same man about 7 a.m. as she was walking in 12000 block of Elliot Avenue, directly in front of Parkview Elementary, Cano said.
“The suspect offered juvenile a ride, which she refused,” he said. “The suspect drove away but returned a few minutes later and again offered the same juvenile a ride. The child became fearful and ran on foot to Parkview Elementary School where in she notified school staff.”
Police described the man they’re seeking as Latino, 25 to 29 years old, 5 feet 7 inches to 5 feet 8 inches tall and of medium build. He had black hair, dark eyes and a light complexion.
He drove a tan, four-door Honda or Toyota sedan, described as “dirty” and unkempt, with tinted windows. The car had numerous stickers on the rear windshield.
“(The) suspect may be living out of (the) vehicle,” Cano said.
Officers are working with local schools and providing them with extra patrols, police said.
Anyone with information is asked to contact El Monte police at 580-2114. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
Sketches courtesy of the El Monte Police Department
Anthony Seth McDaniel, 38, of Compton. (Courtesy, California Department of Justice)
PASADENA >> Prosecutors filed charges against a convicted sex offender from Compton Friday for the alleged kidnapping of two young Pasadena woman managed to break free from their captor in harrowing escapes, officials said.
Anthony Seth McDaniel was charged with two counts of kidnapping with intent to commit oral copulation, Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office spokesman Ricardo Santiago said.
He entered no plea, Santiago said. His arraignment hearing was postponed until May 20 in the Pasadena branch of Los Angeles County Superior Court.
McDaniel is accused of abducting two 18-year-old women about 10 p.m. on April 30 from a bus at Fair Oaks Avenue and Montana Street in Pasadena, Pasadena police officials said. He offered the victims a ride and persuaded them to get into his car.
But the women realized something was amiss when McDaniel drove in the opposite direction of where he had said he would take them, Pasadena police Lt. John Mercado said.
One of the women jumped from McDaniel’s pickup truck as it entered the 210 Freeway at Mountain Street, suffering a broken angle.
After the first victims escaped, McDaniel allegedly pulled a gun, threatened the second victim not to escape as well and ordered her to perform sex acts on him, police said. But she yanked on the steering wheel of the truck, causing it to crash into another car on the 110 Freeway in Los Angeles, police said in a written statement. McDaniel then pushed her from the slowly-moving car, causing injuries to her shoulder and arm.
In addition to two counts of kidnapping with intent to commit a sex crime, prosecutors also allege the special circumstances that McDaniel caused great bodily injury during the crimes, and that he is already a convicted sex offender.
McDaniel was convicted in 2008 of assault with intent to commit a sex offense, according to California’s sex registrant database. He remained on parole and was fitted with a GPS ankle bracelet.
During Friday’s court appearance, McDaniel’s bail was set at $2.08 million, Santiago said.
If convicted as charged, McDaniel faces up to two life terms in prison.
PASADENA >> A parolee who kidnapping two young women in Pasadena before they escaped from him over the weekend was behind bars Thursday, police announced.
Parolee Anthony Seth McDaniel, 38, of Compton, who is fitted with a GPS tracker due to a 2008 conviction for assault, is now accused of kidnapping for the purpose of sexual assault in connection with Saturday’s abduction, which occurred about 10 p.m. at a bus stop at Fair Oaks Avenue and Montana Street, according to Pasadena police officials and Los Angeles County booking records.
The 18-year-old Pasadena women were waiting at a bus stop when the suspect approached in a pickup truck and offered them a ride, Pasadena police Lt. John Mercado said.
“After some coaxing by the driver, the women accepted his offer,” police said in a written statement. But soon, the women noticed the man was taking them in the opposite direction of where they wanted to go.
Realizing something was wrong, one of the women jumped from the truck as it entered the 210 Freeway from Mountain Street, Luna said. She suffered a broken ankle, but managed to escape her captor.
Following the escape of the first victim, McDaniel, “brandished a handgun, demanded sexual favors and threatened to kill the second (victim) as he drove with her,” according to the police statement.
As the truck was traveling along the southbound 110 Freeway near Olympic Boulevard in Los Angeles, the remaining kidnapping victim pulled on the steering wheel of the suspect’s truck, causing the suspect to crash into another car on the freeway, officials said.
“The suspect then opened the front passenger door and pushed the victim out of the slow moving truck before speeding away,” the statement said. A good Samaritan stopped to help the woman, who suffered injuries to her shoulder and arm.
The kidnapper fled and was not found, police said.
“Pasadena Police detectives immediately began an intensive investigation and discovered the suspect was a parolee outfitted with a GPS monitoring device,” according to the statement.
The U.S. Marshal’s Pacific Southwest Fugitive Task Force arrested McDaniel Wednesday afternoon at his workplace in Carson, according to police and booking records.
McDaniel was already on parole for his 2008 conviction for assault to cause mayhem, police said. Mayhem is legally defined in California as, “(a) person who unlawfully and maliciously deprives a human being of a member of his body, or disables, disfigures, or renders it useless, or cuts or disables the tongue, or puts out an eye, or slits the nose, ear, or lip.”
Further details regarding McDaniel previous case were not available Thursday.
According to county booking records, McDaniel was being held without bail pending his initial court appearance, scheduled Friday in the Pasadena branch of Los Angeles County Superior Court.
NORWALK >> Detectives are seeking possible additional victims of a 54-year-old sex offender caught trying to lure a 10-year-old girl into his car at a Norwalk park over the weekend, officials said.
Armando Hernandez of Norwalk had children’s pamphlets from a church, as well as an extra license plate, inside his car at the time of his arrest about 7:30 p.m. Sunday at Norwalk Park, 13000 Clarkdale Ave., Los Angeles County sheriff’s Detective Henry Jaquez said in a written statement.
He tried to abduct the girl shortly after 6:40 p.m., authorities said.
“(Hernandez) attempted to pull the victim, a 10-year-old girl, into a 2000 tan Toyota Corolla, licence plate 7PMD192,” Jaquez said.
The girl’s parents saw what was happening and yelled at the would-be kidnapper, who released the girl, Lt. Robin Limon said.
Responding deputies soon found the suspect, later identified as Hernandez.
Along with two hats and a red flannel shirt, deputies pamphlets for a children’s ministry at Emmanuel Reformed Church in Paramount, as well as a second license plate with a number of 4YRT979 in the trunk, according to a flyer issued by the sheriff’s department.
His car was further described as having a black hood and front fenders and dented rear quarter panels on both sides.
According to California’s online database of registered sex offenders, Hernandez has a previous conviction for annoying or molesting a minor.
He was being held without bail pending a scheduled appearance Friday in Norwalk Superior Court, Los Angeles County booking records show.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Jaquez at 562-466-5434. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
PHOTOS courtesy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department
PASADENA >> Two young Pasadena women escaped from an armed kidnapper late Saturday, including one who broke her ankle leaping from his truck as it entered the 210 Freeway, authorities said.
The would-be kidnapper remained at-large following the attempted abduction, which took place about 10:20 p.m. at Fair Oaks Avenue and Montana Street, Pasadena police Lt. John Mercado said.
The suspect approached the two victims, both young Pasadena women in their late-teens, and offered them a ride across town, the lieutenant said. The victim agreed and got into his pickup truck.
“They realized, as they went in the opposite direction of where they wanted to go, he was not going to take them to their destination,” Mercado said.
One of the young women, who was riding as a front passenger, jumped from the car as it entered the 210 Freeway from Mountain Avenue to escape her captor, he said. She suffered an apparent broken ankle.
The kidnapper continued driving with the second victim still in his truck, the lieutenant said. “He pulled a gun out and told her not to do the same thing.”
But after the truck reached Los Angeles, the second victim managed to escape the gunman as well and flee. She was taken to a hospital for examination after complaining of pain to her body, but it was not clear exactly how she was injured.
Police described the kidnapper as a black man in his 20s, clean-shaven, of medium complexion. He drove a light-colored pickup truck with a rear seat and was armed with a black, semi-automatic handgun.
It was not clear Sunday what the kidnappers ultimate intentions were, had his victims not escaped.
Anyone with information can reach Pasadena police at 626-744-4241. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
TEMPLE CITY >> A man escaped kidnappers posing as police officers after they broke into an apartment, pistol-whipped him and placed him in handcuffs Thursday afternoon, officials said.
Two kidnappers showed up shortly after 3 p.m. at the home where the 32-year-old victim had been staying in the 9000 block of Emperor Avenue, near Rosemead Boulevard along the border between Temple City and the unincorporated county area of East San Gabriel, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Ismael Chavez said.
The men forced their way into the apartment, he said. One of them brandished a black handgun and flashed some type of badge.
Chavez said the intruders told the victim they were police officers and had warrants for his arrest.
When the phony cops tried to handcuff the man, he resisted and one of them struck him in the head with the gun, the lieutenant said.
The attackers then managed to get the man into the handcuffs and lead him outside, Chavez said. As they led him toward a car, he managed to break free from their grasp, slip one of his hands from the handcuffs and run.
Witnesses called 9-1-1 to report seeing a man with handcuffs hanging from his wrist running down the street and yelling for help, Chavez said. The kidnappers fled.
The man was taken to a hospital with minor injuries and released within hours, officials said.
Deputies described the two police impersonators as white men. One stood about 6 feet tall and weighed about 300 pounds. He wore a dark hat. No further description of the second kidnapper was available.
Chavez said the kidnappers used a white, newer-model, BMW 7 Series sedan. A driver was believed to be waiting at the wheel, but no description was available.
The motive in the foiled kidnapping remained under investigation late Thursday, Chavez said. Nothing was stolen during the incident.
Anyone with information can reach the sheriff’s Temple Station at 626-285-7171. Tips may also be submitted anonymously to L.A. Regional Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.
MONTEBELLO >> A car thief stole a minivan with a 1-year-old boy inside of it from a Montebello recycling center Thursday afternoon before being found unharmed, along with the abandoned vehicle, four hours later in Pico Rivera, authorities said.
The theft and possibly unintentional kidnapping took place about 3 p.m. at S.A. Recycling, 1545 Gage Road, Montebello police officials said.
One-year-old Caleb Castro, who was passenger in the red 2003 Honda Odyssey minivan when it was stolen, was found safe inside the minivan nearly four hours later after it was abandoned outside a Pico Rivera McDonalds restaurant, according to police.”
“The child was found inside (the minivan) safe and unharmed and is at a local hospital being looked at,” police said in a written statement.
Authorities issued an Amber Alert following the initial carjacking, Montebello police Lt. Michael Bergman.
“The suspect approached the parked vehicle, while three children sat in the car. Their mother stepped away approximately 10 feet and was going to recycle some items,” according to a police statement.
“The suspect approached the vehicle, ordered two girls — 6- and 4-year-olds out of the car,” the statement continued. But the woman’s 1-year-old son remained in the minivan.
The thief drove off in the minivan, which had the keys still in the ignition, police said.
“The mother screamed that her baby was in the car, however the suspect fled with the vehicle out of the parking lot and southbound on Gage Road,” according to the statement.
A witness who had seen the Amber Alert spotted the stolen minivan shortly before 7 p.m. in the parking lot of a McDonald’s restaurant, 9333 W. Slauson Ave. in Pico Rivera, officials said.
The carjacker remained at large, officials said. He was described as a Latino man, about 30 years, with spiked hair. He spoke Spanish.
Suspect photo courtesy of the Montebello Police Department
MONTEREY PARK >> An unidentified man in a white pickup truck tried to kidnap a teenage girl as she walked to school in Monterey Park early Thursday, police said.
The failed abduction took place about 7:10 a.m. as the victim, 16, was walking in the 600 block of North Orange Avenue, Monterey Park police Sgt. Rick Munder said in a written statement.
The suspect pulled his pickup truck into a parking lot, blocking the girl’s path on the sidewalk, police said. He began engaging the girl in conversation.
“When the victim attempted to walk away, the suspect exited the vehicle and grabbed the victim from behind and attempted to force her into his vehicle,” Munder said. “The victim screamed and was released. The suspect got back into the vehicle and fled southbound on Orange Avenue. The victim was shaken but unharmed.”
Police described the suspect as a Latino man between 20 and 30 years old, about 5 feet 8 inches tall, of thin build and unshaven. He spoke with a Spanish accent, had black hair shaved short and wore a black long-sleeve T-shirt and blue jeans.
His truck was described as a white, early- to mid-2000s-model Chevrolet Colorado or GMC Canyon with a single cab, a black bed liner, tinted windows and oversized rims with five spokes each. Investigators released a surveillance camera image of the truck in hopes of generating clues.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Monterey Park police at 626-573-31311.
PHOTO of suspect vehicle courtesy of the Monterey Park Police Department.
WHITTIER >> Police are seeking a Whittier woman they say fled with her 1-year-old son as child services workers tried to serve an order to remove the child from her custody Thursday morning, officials said.
The boy was found safe at a relatives home Thursday night, however the mother remained at large, Whittier police Lt. Bryan Ellis said.
Martha Martinez, 26, fled from the 12800 block of Foxley Drive with her 1-year-old son about 9:45 a.m. as officials from the County of Los Angeles Department of Children and Family Services arrived to serve a removal order, police officials said in a written statement.
“During the contact, the mother fled the location on foot with the child,” according to the police statement.
Officers searched the area for hours, with help from a bloodhound, but did not find the mother and child.
After reaching out to the public for help, the boy was found safe at a relative’s home Thursday night, Ellis said.
Martha Martinez is Latina, 5 feet 4 inches tall and 120 pounds, police said. She was last seen wearing a tank top, blue jeans and yellow boots.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Whittier police at 562-567-9240.
PASADENA >> A Pasadena man kidnapped his ex-girlfriend and drove her around the city before police arrested him early Saturday morning, officials said.
Javier Vasquez, 21, was booked on suspicion of kidnapping and false imprisonment, Pasadena police Lt. John Mercado said.
Police received a report about 2 a.m. of a distraught woman sitting on a curb in the 200 block of South Oak Knoll Avenue, he said.
“(She) tells us that her boyfriend forced her into his car against her will,” Mercado said. “He drove her around the city of Pasadena and wouldn’t let her get out.”
The woman tried to escape several times as the car slowed or stopped for traffic, the lieutenant said. “He would grab her by her wrist or hair.”
Vasquez ultimately released the woman on Oak Knoll Avenue and drove off, Mercado said. Police arrested him as a returned home later in the morning.
The victim, an Altadena resident, suffered no serious injuries.
According to county booking records, Vasquez was being held in lieu of $100,000 bail pending his initial court appearance.