Man Fakes Car Trouble to Lure Women in Otay Ranch - NBC 7 San Diego

Man Fakes Car Trouble to Lure Women in Otay Ranch



    (Published Monday, Aug. 18, 2014)

    Neighbors in Otay Ranch are being warned of a suspicious man pretending to have car trouble.

    Instead, witnesses say, the suspect is preying on women in the Winding Walk community.

    The manager of the community association tells NBC 7 the suspect is parking along Hunte Parkway between Olympic and Eastlake Parkway.

    So far, two residents allege that they have encountered the suspect in the past two weeks. The community association posted signs throughout the neighborhood warning residents about the alleged predator.

    They say a man in an older model blue Toyota Corolla has been parking along Hunte Parkway, claiming to have some kind of car trouble. When women pass by, he flags them down for help. According to witnesses, when the women approach to find out what's wrong, the man tries to grab them.

    Many neighbors were shocked to hear about this, especially since police posted fliers warning the same neighbors about a flasher in the area back in May.

    “I kind of don't want to come out late at night and everything. Even though what I thought should be a safe neighborhood, I kind of just want to go straight to my car, not walk around or anything and just stay close by my house,” Otay Ranch resident Kristina Reinhart said.

    Reinhart also says she was unaware of the flier posted about the incident on a light pole next door to her house.

    No other incidents of the alleged flasher have been reported or if it may be related to the suspect in this case. Chula Vista Police are still investigating the case.

    Still, some neighbors are worried because the area consists mainly of families. Desha Hollie says she moved to Otay Ranch after hearing that it was a safe military community.

    “Now I think we just need to be more aware of our surroundings, people, strangers, and talk to our kids more,” Hollie said.

    Neighbor Julie Weathers agrees. She believes women with children may be more vulnerable since it is easy to get distracted while walking and trying to tend to a baby at the same time.

    “You have to just keep your eyes open,”Weathers said. “I don’t walk with earphones on or anything. I’m always being very cautious of what’s around me."

    The community manager tells NBC he also sent an email blast to all Winding Walk residents. Meanwhile, they have their own private security guards stepping up patrols.

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