Man Held in Molestation and Attempted Kidnapping

A Superior Court judge ordered a 39-year-old man held on $1.25-million bond after he appeared on charges of child molestation and attempted kidnapping.

Victor Duarte is charged with one count of attempted kidnapping for the purpose of child molestation, and two counts of forcible lewd acts upon a child under the age of 14.

The Mexican national appeared before El Monte Superior Court Judge Peter Meeka but did not enter a plea because his arraignment was delayed.

Duarte, who authorities describe as a transient, was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of groping an 11-year-old girl in a La Puente Pic ‘N Save store.


Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies arrested Duarte about 6 p.m. Tuesday after a girl shopping at the store with her mother complained she was molested. A store employee saw the incident, confronted Duarte and then called sheriff’s deputies, authorities said.

Authorities allege he is the same man who tried to entice a 7-year-old girl out of a Kmart in the city of Industry on Monday with offers of money.

On Wednesday, the 7-year-old girl identified Duarte as the man who approached her and grabbed her briefly, officials said.