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LAPD: Video shows suspect in Northridge girl's assault entering Mexico

April 05, 2013|By Kate Mather, Joel Rubin and Richard Winton

Authorities have obtained video footage of the primary suspect in the kidnapping and sexual assault of a Northridge girl crossing into Mexico, Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck said Friday.

The video shows Tobias Dustin Summers, 32, crossing over a footbridge into Tecate, Mexico, a few days ago, Beck said. It was unclear if he crossed back, the chief said.

Summers was charged in his absence Wednesday with 36 counts of sexual assault, as well as kidnapping and first-degree burglary, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's office said. If convicted, he faces multiple life terms in prison.

Police allege he was the one who had taken the 10-year-old girl from her home the night of March 27 during what sources said may have begun as a burglary. The girl, barefoot and appearing battered and bruised, was dropped off about 12 hours later in a Woodland Hills parking lot.

The complaint alleges that Summers broke into the home and used a knife to abduct the girl. He is charged with committing numerous sexual acts on the child and taking nude photos of the girl.

Authorities identified Summers, a career criminal, last week as a suspect in the case and said later they had broadened their search to San Diego. The filing of charges could make it easier for authorities to extradite Summers from other states or Mexico.

He was charged along with Daniel Martinez, who faces kidnapping and burglary counts. Martinez, 30, was arrested Sunday just two miles from the girl's home, and is described by Los Angeles police as a secondary suspect in the crime. He appeared in a San Fernando courtroom Wednesday and entered a not guilty plea. If convicted, he faces up to 12 years in prison.

LAPD investigators and prosecutors believe Martinez waited in a car outside the girl's home, and when Summers came out with her, drove a short distance before leaving. Martinez is not believed to have initiated the kidnapping or participated in the assault, authorities said.

Law enforcement sources told The Times the incident was believed to have begun as a "hot prowl" burglary. Authorities did not immediately disclose how or why it escalated.

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

Summers has convictions for receiving stolen property, possession of an explosive and presenting false identification to police, according to records. 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, according to records. In April 2012, he was convicted of making threats of death or great bodily injury.

It's unclear 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.

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kate.mather@latimes.com

joel.rubin@latimes.com

richard.winton@latimes.com

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