FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 17, 2014
Contact: Jay Moroso, Sergeant
There have been two reports of attempted kidnappings in Santa Monica in the past 3 days. The first attempt occurred in the 1600 block of Ocean Avenue at approximately 8 pm on January 15, 2014. The victim, who was walking on the sidewalk at the time, told police that the perpetrator approached her from behind in a vehicle passed her, and pulled over to the curb in front of her. He got out of the vehicle and stood near the car as if he was waiting for someone. As the victim passed, the suspect grabbed her in a bear hug and moved her a few feet toward the car, while ordering her into the car. As he did that, an unidentified person appeared in a stairwell in an adjacent apartment building, causing the suspect to let go of the victim. The victim walked away and immediately reported the incident to the police. The subject is described as a male, black, 30's 6-2, 200-230 pounds, with short, shaved hair and a beard wearing blue jeans and a black hoodie sweatshirt. The vehicle the subject emerged from was described as a late model, black, VW, 4-door, hatch back, with tinted windows.
The second incident occurred this morning at 10:30 am when the victim was walking south on 14th Street in the area of Olympic Boulevard. She saw a male walking south, ahead of her on the same side of the street. She did not pay much attention to him and eventually passed him in the 1900 block of 14th Street. Moments later she heard footsteps behind her and felt the suspect grab her waist with one hand and covered her mouth with his other hand. He ordered the victim to get into a car. The victim screamed and the subject ran away northbound while the victim ran south to Pico Boulevard. The victim did not see the vehicle involved in the crime but was able to identify the subject in this incident as a male, black, 20's, 5-10, thin build, with short, shaved hair, wearing dark colored shorts with an orange or red stripe on them and a matching short sleeve shirt.
Detectives are currently conducting follow-up investigations regarding the two cases to include the review of surveillance video. There has been no confirmation that the suspects in each crime are one in the same; however, the facts involved in both cases tend to point that way. The fact that the suspect(s) choose to commit one crime in daylight and both on well-traveled streets indicates that they are bold and they are dangerous. The public is asked to remain vigilant and to report any suspicious behavior to the police. In both cases the women were walking alone. Women should remain alert when walking by themselves and if possible, travel with a companion.
If suspicious activity is seen the public should call the Santa Monica Police Communications Center at (310) 458-8491 or call 911 if the situation is an emergency. If anyone has any information regarding these crimes, please call Detective Bambrick at (310) 458-8932 or Detective Ahn at (310) 458-8452 during normal business hours. Information may also be reported to the Communications Center at the number listed above.
Anonymous tipsters may contact Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS (8477) or www.lacrimestoppers.org. To text an anonymous tip to Crime Stoppers; please view their webpage for detailed instructions. If the information leads to an arrest, the tipster is eligible to receive a reward of up to $1, 000.00.