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Northridge kidnapping: Search for main suspect widens to San Diego

April 02, 2013|By Andrew Blankstein, Kate Mather and Richard Winton

As authorities continued to search for the main suspect in the kidnapping and sexual assault of a 10-year-old Northridge girl, they cautioned that the 30-year-old man could be in the San Diego area.

San Diego police have distributed a flier warning that Tobias Dustin Summers should be considered armed and dangerous and asking anyone who sees him to call 911 immediately.

When announcing the arrest of a man described as a "secondary suspect" in the case, Los Angeles police said Monday that detectives had reason to believe Summers could be in San Diego and that he may have changed his appearance by shaving his head.

PHOTOS: 10-year-old girl kidnapped from Northridge home

Authorities have not said how their investigation led them to suspect Summers or Daniel Martinez, 29. Martinez was being held on $1-million bail after his arrest Sunday on suspicion of kidnapping.

LAPD officials initially said two men were suspected of taking the girl from her Northridge home but said Saturday that Summers was the primary focus of the case.

Court records show both men have extensive criminal histories, though authorities said neither man is a registered sex offender. Most of the crimes the men were convicted of occurred in the San Fernando Valley. 

Summers has convictions for receiving stolen property, grand theft, petty theft, possession of an explosive and presenting false identity to police, records showed. In 2009, he was convicted of battery. Originally, he was also charged with annoying a child, but that charge was dismissed.

Between 2004 and 2012, Martinez was convicted of burglary, petty theft, grand theft, resisting a police officer and unlawfully entering a property, records showed. In April 2012, he was convicted of threats of death or great bodily injury.

It's unclear exactly how long either suspect has spent behind bars. But it appears Summers received an eight-month prison sentence in the petty theft case, and Martinez was sentenced to 16 months in prison in the grand theft case.

LAPD Deputy Chief Kirk Albanese said Summers was taken into custody Jan. 13 for a probation violation and released Jan. 19, but he did not elaborate on the violation.

Sources told The Times on Monday that investigators were still trying to determine why the girl was targeted. At the moment, they said, they do not believe it was related to a 2008 international parental abduction involving her relatives.

LAPD investigators have said the girl's mother noticed her daughter was missing from her bedroom about 3:40 a.m. Wednesday. She was found about 12 hours later in a parking lot about six miles away.

Authorities believe she was dropped off in Woodland Hills, where a man spotted her in a parking lot and pointed her in the direction of nearby police officers.

Sources later told The Times she had been sexually assaulted.

After she went missing, the girl was initially identified by The Times, citing authorities. However, it is the policy of The Times not to identify victims in cases of alleged sexual crimes.

The LAPD asked anyone with information about Summers to call detectives at (213) 486-6890. Anyone who sees him should call 911.

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andrew.blankstein@latimes.com

kate.mather@latimes.com

richard.winton@latimes.com

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