Police released a composite sketch Friday of a man who allegedly tried to grope and grab two different teenage girls in the Otay Mesa area Wednesday afternoon.
According to police, a Hispanic man in his 20s approached a 13-year-old girl walking home from school along the 1400 block of Piedra Street at around 3:45 p.m.
He allegedly walked up to the girl and grabbed her from behind. The man groped the teen, but police say she was able to scream and fight him off. She then ran home and told her parents, who called police.
In this incident, the man was last seen running away towards Arruza Street and Picador Boulevard.
A few minutes later, police received reports of another teen allegedly groped by a man a few blocks away from the scene of the first incident.
In that case, a 17-year-old girl was walking near Arruza Street and Del Sur Boulevard when a male allegedly walked up and grabbed her from behind. He groped the girl, but let her go when she began to struggle and fight back.
The teen was left lying in the street bleeding, police said, and received treatment from medics.
The man was last seen getting into an older-model, beige-colored sedan. He drove off south on Del Sur Boulevard.
In both groping cases, police say the suspect is described as a clean-shaven, Hispanic male between 18 and 23 years old. He’s between 5-foot-5 and 5-foot-7 with a normal to thin build and was wearing a dark hooded sweatshirt, dark pants and glasses.
Officers scoured the area in search of the groping suspect Wednesday afternoon, but he was not immediately located. The investigation on both cases is ongoing.
Anyone with information concerning these assaults is asked to call the SDPD’s Child Abuse Unit at (619) 531-2260 or Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477.
The incidents left some local parents feeling uneasy, including Otay Mesa resident Nancy Beltran.
She told NBC 7 this makes her worried for the safety of her own two daughters.
"It surprises me, but it does worry me because sometimes my daughters are playing in the front yard and somebody could just roll up. Yeah, it’s scary,” said Beltran. "Don't walk alone. Don't let your kids walk alone. Walk in a group."
The groping incidents in Otay Mesa Wednesday happened about a half-mile from where an unknown man recently tried to kidnap a woman by pulling her into a van. In that case, the woman was able to run away and call for help.