MAYWOOD, Calif. (KABC) -- A 13-year-old girl sleeping in her own bed was attacked by a break-in suspect, who sheriff's investigators believe is linked to three other similar incidents in Maywood.
The latest incident occurred around 4:30 a.m. Wednesday at a residence in the 3600 block of 53rd Street.
The victim's father said the suspect got into the house through a kitchen window, made his way through the home and found the girl's bedroom.
The suspect entered the bedroom and grabbed the sleeping girl by the leg and covered her mouth. The girl's father said the suspect told his daughter to "shut up and don't say anything," at which point the teen started kicking and screaming.
The victim's father, who did not want to be identified, confronted the suspect and punched him in the face, sheriff's officials said. However, the suspect was able to flee before family members could get a clear look at him. They did say he didn't appear to be armed.
"Thank God he didn't have a weapon or something. Otherwise, who knows?" the girl's father said.
Sheriff's investigators said this attack bears a striking resemblance to three other incidents that have occurred in the last two weeks in the area.
The first incident took place at around 1:30 a.m. on Oct. 5 at a home in the 6100 block of King Avenue. A woman was sitting in her living room when a man emerged from a hallway, approached her and grabbed her breasts, officials said.
The woman fought off the suspect and pushed him out of the house. The man fled the scene.
On Oct. 18, another incident occurred at an apartment in the 4300 block of 53rd Street - about one mile from the first crime.
Sheriff's officials say around 2:30 a.m., a man in the apartment yelled out after noticing a dark silhouette and light illuminating from a cellphone. The suspect immediately fled by jumping out of an apartment window.
About an hour and a half that same morning, authorities believe the same suspect entered another nearby residence in the 4100 block of 53rd Street, where a woman was awakened by someone touching her intimate body part.
The victim jumped out of bed, locked herself in a different room and called 911. Responding deputies could not locate the suspect.
The 13-year-old girl was attacked the very next day.
Authorities say in all the incidents, the suspect struck in the early morning hours and entered the house by removing the screen of an unsecured window.
The victims describe the suspect as a Hispanic male in his 20s, between 5 feet 2 inches and 5 feet 5 inches tall, with a thin build and wearing dark clothing.
Authorities are warning residents to be vigilant and lock their doors and windows at night.
If you have any relevant information about these crimes, you're urged to contact Detective Andujo with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department's East L.A. station at (323) 264-4151. You can also submit anonymous tips by calling Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS.
Maywood girl fights off predator during 4th neighborhood break-in within 2 weeks