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8th Girl Confronted by Driver of Pickup

Times Staff Writer

An eighth attempt in the Los Angeles area by a man with a mustache to lure a child into a blue pickup occurred Thursday afternoon in Pico Rivera as an 8-year-old girl was walking home from school.

The incident is the first to surface outside the South Bay area, where seven attempts involving nine children had been reported from Sept. 13 through Wednesday in Manhattan Beach, Redondo Beach and Hawthorne.

“It sounds like it could very well be the same person,” said Detective Cheryl Comstock of the Pico Rivera sheriff’s substation, who is investigating the case.

Sheriff’s Lt. Mel Savage of the Pico Rivera station said that the man, described as about 30 years old with black hair, brown eyes and a mustache, approached the girl as she was nearing the intersection of Umser Street and Bollenbacher Drive. He was driving a dark blue pickup truck with tinted windows, the girl told investigators.

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Savage said that the man told the girl that her mother had sent him to pick her up and that she should get in the truck.

The suspect in the other abduction attempts made similar statements, sometimes telling children that their parents were injured in accidents and he had been sent to take them home or to school.

Savage said the girl in Pico Rivera ignored the man and continued walking. A woman walking ahead of the girl turned around and looked at the suspect, who drove away, Comstock said.

“Possibly, she scared him away,” Comstock said.

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Comstock said the girl reported the incident as soon as she got home.


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