Unidentified Male Approaches 13-year-old Female Walking to School
On 4/27/12, at about 7:59 AM, the Eureka Police Department received a suspicious person call in which a 13-year-old female was reportedly approached twice on two different dates by an unidentified male asking her to get into his vehicle.
The first incident occurred on Tuesday, 4/24/12 around 4:45 PM as the juvenile was walking home from Zane Junior High School (2155 S Street, Eureka). The suspect was parked at Buhne and ‘S’ Streets as she walked by. He began circling and following the juvenile to the vicinity of Harris and K Streets where he asked her to get into the car with him. The second incident occurred on the 27th at about 7:15 AM near ‘S’ and Buhne Streets while the juvenile was walking to school. The suspect was parked in his vehicle there and he asked the juvenile to get into his car. According to the juvenile, the male also “smiled” and motioned for her to get into his vehicle with him on both occasions. The suspect was not known to the juvenile.
The suspect was described as a Hispanic male adult, early 20’s, with short black hair and a light complexion. He was further described as being shorter with a small build. According to the juvenile, the suspect did not have any visible tattoos or facial hair. He was last seen wearing a black tank top. The suspect’s vehicle was described as a compact “newer, curvier” style black 4-door sedan. The vehicle may have a small dent near the passenger side headlight and was reportedly “very clean.” The juvenile advised the vehicle had California license plates affixed to it during the first incident but had no plates on it during the second incident. The suspect was parked waiting in his vehicle on both occasions.
Extra patrol checks in the vicinity have been requested, the school and local news media have been notified, and EPD’s School Resource Officer is aware of and investigating the incident. Anyone with information or questions about this case should contact Officer Chris Jenkins at (707) 476-1600. You may also leave a message for him during normal business hours at (707) 441-4060 (EPD front counter). If you need to speak with an officer immediately, you can reach EPD’s Dispatch Center at (707) 441-4044 (non-emergency line).
The Eureka Police Department advises parents to talk to their children about stranger safety. Children should be advised to NEVER approach or get into a vehicle with grownups they don’t know or only “kind of” know. They should never go anywhere with anyone unless they ask their parent/caretaker first. Children should also not give out any personal information (name, age, school, address etc.) about him or herself without their parents’ permission. EPD also encourages all young children to be accompanied by a responsible adult when walking to school or to a friend’s house etc. Older youth not accompanied by adults should walk in pairs and/or small groups for added safety. “Children who are alone or isolated are more vulnerable to someone who means them harm.” Children should report any suspicious persons following or attempting to communicate with them to their teachers, parents, and local law enforcement agency.