RIVERSIDE – A suspect is still being sought in the abduction of a 9-year-old girl who was found early Sunday morning, Riverside police officials said at a Tuesday morning news conference at their Magnolia Street station.
Police are still piecing together details and seeking the man who kidnapped the girl from her apartment late Saturday night. Currently, the unnamed victim is listed in “serious but stable condition” at Loma Linda University Medical Center.
“She was physically assaulted,” said Det. Roberta Hopewell, who did not elaborate on the nature of the assault. “She will recover. Her injuries aren’t life threatening.”
A news release said the kidnapping occurred between 11 p.m. on May 7 and 1 a.m. on May 8.
The 9-year-old’s abductor turned her loose, “dumping” her out of his car during the early morning hours on Sunday. The victim, who was taken from her home on Pike Street and Herman Drive by a suspect who climbed through a window, was taken about three miles from her home and left in a neighborhood near the Riverside-Corona city borders.
The abducted girl knocked on residents’ doors, appearing “disoriented and telling police that a man had taken her from her home.”
Reports stated that the girl had to knock on more than a few residents’ doors before the police were called. Some residents were suspicious of a knock on the door at such late hours.
Two other siblings, including a 12-year-old brother and 3-year-old sister, were also at home while the childrens’ single mother was at work, said police.
Police have no suspects, but Lt. Ed Blevins said investigators won’t reject any possible theories, including checking out any reports of friends or acquaintances of the girl’s family.
“The father has been contacted,” said Hopewell, “but he’s not involved.”
Investigators, according to a release, are looking to enhance a video of a pickup truck that was in the area near the time of the crime. Hopewell linked that possibility into other possible leads, saying, “We’re hopeful.”
During the night, Riverside investigators knocked on virtually every door in the girl’s neighborhood seeking information or any reports of anything unusual, said Blevins. Calls to police, he said, came in just before 1 a.m. on Sunday.
The public is now responding to the case, said Hopewell. “I’m getting phone calls with information.”
Hopewell said local FBI investigators are involved. Riverside police have submitted forensic evidence to local laboratories for analysis, she said. “We’re hoping for a quick turnaround on that.”
Police are not releasing any information on the girls’ race. A release specified that the other children are staying with relatives at an undisclosed location.
Hopewell confirmed a release’s statement on whether or not charges would be brought against the mother for leaving her children alone. “We’re not investigating that aspect of it yet,” she said. “We’re focusing on what happened.”
The victim was first taken to Parkview Hospital in Riverside before being transferred to LLUMC.
“I’ve talked to her twice,” said Hopewell. “Right now, we can’t really say a lot.”