Police: Man tries to lure girl into car near Salinas school

Man tries to lure girl into car near Salinas school
SALINAS, Calif. -

A terrifying moment for a Salinas, mother of 2. She, who wishes to remain anonymous, said a Washington Middle School teacher called her from her daughter's cell phone, Tuesday night, just moments after a man tried to lure her child into his car.

"He got out of the car and tried to grab her arm. He tried to coax her into going into the car," said the mother.

She said two Washington Middle School students had seen her child walking away from the man and told a teacher, who called 911.

Salinas Police said a woman was driving the vehicle that approached the young girl, while the man acted. Wednesday night, they said they are still on the lookout for the pair. 

"It's hard to say what their intentions were, but their behavior is suspicious in nature and crosses the threshold where they could be charged with a crime," said Miguel Cabrera with the Salinas Police Department. Police said the couple could face charges of "annoying and molesting" a minor.

Parents said they feel unsettled that predators could still be nearby.

"There's people that are trying to do harm to our children," said Washington Middle School parent, Miguela Bautista. Bautista walked her children into school, Wednesday afternoon, after hearing of the scare. "If the public knows what's going on, maybe more of us can be aware of when we watch kids walking home. If they see something abnormal, to do something about it, or call someone," said Bautista.

The victim's mother said she won't be letting her daughter walk home alone, again. 

"I am a full time single mom, so it's a little bit hard now. I'm going to be making the sacrifice to get my hours cut at work and leaving early, just to pick her up," said the mother. She said this is a sacrifice she is willing to make if it means her daughter is safe.

The suspects Salinas Police are still searching for are described as an adult Hispanic male and female. Police said the man was wearing dark clothing similar to the Raider jacket pictured below.

The two were said to be driving a gray, 4 door, sedan. Police recommend if your child walks to school, to do so in a group.


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