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Anaheim attempted kidnappings occurred near Ball Junior High

November 10, 2012 12:00:00 AM PST
An investigation is under way into two attempted kidnappings that occurred within an hour of each other near an Anaheim school.

The incidents occurred Friday near the intersection of Cerritos Avenue and Bayless Street. Police say the well-traveled intersection didn't deter a man from trying to abduct two school girls. In both cases, the victims were walking to Ball Junior High School located in the 1500 block of West Ball Road.

"To do it at this hour of the day with multiple people out and around is certainly brazen," said Sgt. Bob Dunn of the Anaheim Police Department.

In the first attempted kidnapping, the 11-year-old victim told police she was approached by a male suspect standing near a parked vehicle around 7:30 a.m. The suspect approached the victim near the area's train tracks asking her to help him reach something he dropped inside his car. She refused and continued walking to school as the suspect followed her in his vehicle.

Anaheim resident Julie Burnette walks around the area at that time and was appalled to learn of the attempted kidnappings.

"It's terrible what's going on with the world nowadays," said Burnette. "What's wrong with it?"

Neighbor Tim Womack also cycles in the area. He, also, didn't notice anything.

"A lot of people walk this street, so that's bold and crazy at the same time," said Womack.

At 8:22 a.m., police responded to a call of a second attempted kidnapping. Once again, the suspect asked for the 12-year-old female victim's assistance in reaching something he dropped inside his car. The victim fled to a nearby house after the suspect touched the victim's shoulder.

According to Lilly Arragon, it was around 8:30 a.m. when she was awoken by the 12-year-old victim.

"She was crying and shaking. She was scared. She didn't know what to do," said Arragon. "She was already on the phone with police when she got here."

The suspect is described as a Hispanic male, between 20 and 30 years old, 5 feet 9 inches tall, about 165 pounds with a dark complexion and brown curly hair. He was wearing a white T-shirt and light-colored jeans at the time of the incidents. The victims told police he spoke Spanish and broken English.

His vehicle is described as an older, black, four-door compact vehicle with minor scratches on the passenger side.

Police are currently working on a composite sketch of the suspect hoping to get word out of the attempted kidnappings before school resumes on Monday.

"We ask that students on the way to school remain vigilant and parents remain vigilant," said Sgt. Dunn."If you see something, say something."

Anyone with information is asked to call Orange County Crime Stoppers at (855) TIP-OCCS.


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