The Coast News Group

Series of reported child-luring attempts investigated in East County

SANTEE — A report of a possible attempted child abduction today near Carlton Oaks Country Club — the fifth such crime under investigation this week in the East County — turned out to be unfounded, officials said.

Three boys told authorities they were walking to Carlton Oaks Schoolin Santee about 8 a.m. when a red car pulled up next to them and the driver told them to get in, according to sheriff’s officials.

The youngsters claimed that they refused and ran off, after which the motorist drove away.

After interviewing the boys, detectives determined that the incident did not occur, Sgt. Phillip Beaumont said. It was unclear why the children made the false report.

Four similar crimes were reported over the last several days in eastern San Diego County.

A 12-year-old girl told authorities she was approached Monday morning while walking to school on South Mollison Avenue near Main Street in El Cajon, police Lt. Royal Bates said. She told investigators a man in a vehicle asked her a question, then made a sexual comment and drove away.

No vehicle description was released, but the driver was described as a balding white man with a scruffy, unshaven face and dark hair, wearing a gray shirt and pants of similar color, Bates said.

Around 3:15 p.m. that same day, a 13-year-old girl reportedly was walking home on Swallow Drive east of Finch Street, near Flying Hills Elementary School, when she was approached by a man on foot who told her,

“Come with me — I’m safe,” according to Bates.

The man in that incident was described as white, about 40 to 50 years old, with a gray beard and short dark hair. He wore tan shorts, a dark shirt and a black baseball hat, and was carrying a black backpack.

About 3:15 p.m. Tuesday, a 9-year-old boy reportedly was approached by a man in an alley off Cuyamaca Street in El Cajon, Bates said. The man drove up in a red sedan, waved at the boy and told him, “Get in the car,” according to police.

That motorist was described as a white man in his 20s with a mustache, wearing a black baseball hat and a red shirt.

About 8 a.m. Wednesday, a man in a blue car reportedly pulled up next to a boy at Woodside Avenue and Winter Gardens Boulevard in Lakeside and told him to get in.

The child told investigators he ignored the stranger and reported the incident when he arrived at the campus.

Anyone with information about any of the reported crimes is asked to call El Cajon police at 619-579-3311 or the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department at 858-565-5200.