Murrieta police are investigating an alleged child-annoyance incident reported Thursday morning by a Murrieta Valley High School student who was walking to school, according to a statement issued by the Murrieta Valley Unified School District.
The 15-year-old girl told responding officers that at about 7:04 a.m. as she was walking along the sidewalk near Washington Avenue and Vineyard Parkway, a man driving an older blue compact car pulled up beside her, stopped his car and performed a lewd act, Murrieta police Sgt. Jay Froboese confirmed.
“She could see through the passenger window of the car, and observed a man inside the car with his pants down,” Froboese said.
She called police, who arrived at 7:11 a.m.; however, the suspect had already driven off, the sergeant told Patch. The victim was not able to write his license plate number down, he said.
The suspected perpetrator was described by the student as a Hispanic man in his late 40s or early 50s, with a stocky build and cropped dark hair.
His vehicle was described as a 1990s unknown make or model compact car with blue oxidized paint and dirty tinted windows.
Froboese confirmed that the Murrieta police school resource sergeant was investigating the incident.
Anyone with more information about the incident was encouraged to contact the Murrieta Police Department’s 24-hour dispatch line at 951-696-3615.
The Murrieta Valley Unified School District encouraged parents or students who have questions about the incident to speak with a school administrator.
The district also asked parents to share the following safety guidelines with students who walk to and from school:
1. Always walk to and from school with a friend, a group of friends or an adult.
2. Always leave school and go straight home when school is over.
3. Never let a stranger get too close, whether he or she is in a car or walking.
4. Never accept candy, a present, a ride, or anything else from a stranger.
5. Never tell a stranger your name or address.
6. Never go with a stranger for any reason, even if he/she says they know your parents.
7. Never go into deserted places alone.
8. Never keep secrets from your parents about strangers.
9. Stick to the same safe route when you walk to and from school.
10. If a stranger tries to grab you, yell as loud as you can and run away.
11. Report any incidents to a trusted adult immediately.
“Communicating these safety tips to children will help them know how to respond if they encounter a situation like the one that occurred today,” the district stated.