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SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA / A news summary

Girl Fights Off Abduction; Serial Attacker Suspected

March 01, 2000

BELLFLOWER — A 16-year-old Bellflower girl who fought off a kidnap attempt Monday evening may have escaped from a sexual predator who abducted three girls in the area recently, authorities said.

The girl was outside her father's store in an alley behind Alondra Boulevard about 7 p.m. Monday when a man grabbed her from behind, covered her mouth with his hand and tried to drag her toward his car, sheriff's investigators' said.

She bit his hand, causing him to loosen his grip, and then screamed for her father's office assistant, who came running. The girl's father said later that the attacker pretended the whole thing had been a misunderstanding.

"He said, 'I'm sorry. You're the wrong person. I'm leaving now,' " the father said. Then the assailant got in his car and drove away. The girl chased him, trying to get the license number.

Three other girls have been grabbed from behind by a man who drove a similar car.

A 14-year-old was abducted in Paramount and sexually assaulted Feb. 23. A 15-year-old was kidnapped in the same city and sexually assaulted Feb. 15. On Feb. 3, a 13-year-old was taken from Santa Fe Springs and raped.

Investigators say they have not determined if the same man is responsible for the attacks. But in all cases, the attacker was described as white, 25 to 35 years old, about 5 feet 8, with stringy hair. He grabbed his victims as they were walking to and from school on residential streets, pushed them into a dark-colored car and drove them to other locations, authorities said.

Anyone with any information is asked to contact deputies at (562) 220-2178.

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