A parolee allegedly attempted to sexually assault a 16-year-old girl in a grocery shop restroom in southern California Sunday afternoon. However, after the victim’s mother and father cried out for help, customers and employees came to her rescue.
What about the details?
According to the Los Angeles Times, the suspect followed a girl into the bathroom of a Stater Bros. shop in South Whittier and locked the door. He then attempted to assault her. South Whittier, a small unincorporated community located about 40 minutes southwest of Los Angeles, is a good example.
Sgt. Jose Ramos stated that the suspect “pushed” the victim and then got on top of her, KTTV-TV reported. He also attempted to sexually assault her. Ramos is a member of the Special Victims Bureau at the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department.
The girl fought back, KTTV reported and screamed for help. Her mother also heard her scream and began to scream.
Witnesses told the station that “the screams were just frightening.” She was screaming, “Help, Help!” Help! “My daughter is in the bathroom with a man!”
The Times reported that customers and employees heard the screams and rushed to the bathroom.
According to LASD, three men pinned the suspect on the floor of the bathroom and kept him there until police arrived. According to the LASD, the incident occurred around 2 p.m.
According to the newspaper, the girl was taken to a hospital for treatment.
Who are the suspects?
According to the Times, Steven Magdaleno was 38 years old. He was also charged with felony assault to perpetrate rape, false imprisonment with violence, and attempted escape.
Magdaleno was wanted for violating parole and gave his cousin’s name to deputies, Ramos said to the San Gabriel Valley Tribune.
According to court records, he has been convicted of identity theft, possession of methamphetamine, and being under the influence.
Magdaleno, who is homeless, sleeps in the lot behind the grocery store. His last known address was Whittier, Ramos said to the Tribune.
According to The Times, Magdaleno pleaded guilty Wednesday to a misdemeanor and is currently being held on $410,000 bail.
DA George Cascon speaks
“It is appalling that someone tried to sexually assault a 16-year-old girl in the middle of the day in a grocery store restroom,” Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón said in a release, according to the Times. “Brazen crimes like these are shocking to the entire community because the girl and her family should have felt safe in that space.”
Gascon thanked employees and customers for their courage and bravery. The Times cautioned others that they may have been victims of the suspect.
The sheriff’s department asked the public to help identify possible additional victims, the Times added, noting that the sheriff’s department’s Special Victims Bureau can be reached at (877) 710-5273 or [email protected].