Details are emerging about a convicted sex offender, who was on the run for almost a month with his girlfriend and daughter when he was taken into custody near Valley Center.
"She is just adorable," San Diego Sheriff's Department spokeswoman Jan Caldwell said about the girl. "She was running around, clutching a teddy bear that one of the detectives had given her, drawing pictures, eating pizza, having a grand old time."
A doctor is going to evaluate the child for what is being called a mild case of chicken pox. There's another concern, however, about the girl. Potter, 27, is wanted for a parole violation. The underlying charge is being a violent sexual predator, according to Caldwell. According to the Electronic Sex Offender Registration and Notification Web site of Ohio, Potter's victims were a male child and a female child.
"Obviously with that history, that's going to be an element in the equation," Caldwell said. "We're concerned, but I'm not at liberty to say anything else about that."
A detective with the San Diego Sheriff's Department who is "specially trained" to talk to young children is supposed to sit down with the child sometime on Wednesday.
The trio was staying at the Morning Star Ranch, a retreat in Valley Center, for about a week. Another couple spent time with them, then took off for the East Coast. They saw a billboard with the girl's picture and called the caretaker at the retreat. The couple asked the caretaker to verify the license plate, and then he called police.
"Nothing gives a law enforcement officer more pleasure than to recover a kidnapped or abducted child safely," Caldwell said.
Watson is in custody at the Vista Detention Facility. Potter is being held downtown. It's unclear where or when they are going to be arraigned.
The girl will go back to Ohio with either a family member or a federal marshal as an escort.