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Santa Monica Police Still on the Lookout for Attempted Kidnapping Suspects

Santa Monica Real Estate Company, Roque and Mark

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Santa Monica Convention and Visitors Bureau

By Jason Islas
Staff Writer

January 31, 2014 -- More than two weeks after back-to-back attempted kidnappings in Santa Monica, police are still looking for suspects.

Two women were almost nabbed off the busy streets of Santa Monica days apart in what could be related attacks, according to police.

One victim described her attacker as a black man in his 30s, about 6 feet, 2 inches tall and weighing between 200 and 230 pounds, while the other victim described a slightly younger, shorter black man in his 20s.

“We are not sure how many (suspects) or if the two incidents are connected,” said Sergeant Jay Moroso, with the Santa Monica Police Department.

The SMPD said the case is still open and investigators are searching for leads, but that there have not been any reports of kidnapping attempts since the two.

And, officials said, they have not yet determined a motive.

The first incident occurred on January 15 at 8 p.m. on the 1600 block of Ocean Avenue, officials said.

“The victim, who was walking on the sidewalk at the time, told police that the perpetrator approached her from behind in a vehicle passed her, and pulled over to the curb in front of her,” Police said.

According to the victim’s report, the man got out of a late model black Volkswagen 4-door hatch back with tinted windows and stood nearby, as if waiting for someone.

When she passed, he grabbed her “in a bear hug and moved her a few feet toward the car, while ordering her into the car,” officials reported.

The man fled after someone came out of a nearby apartment building.

On January 17, another woman was accosted, this time in broad daylight.

According to authorities, she was walking south on 14th Street near Olympic Boulevard when she was grabbed from behind and was ordered into a car, though she did not see the car, police said.

After she screamed, the suspect fled on foot.

Following the incidents, police warned residents to be on alert, especially women and recommended traveling in groups.

“The fact that the suspect(s) choose to commit one crime in daylight and both on well-traveled streets indicates that they are bold and they are dangerous,” officials said.

If suspicious activity is seen the public should call the Santa Monica Police Communications Center at (310) 458-8491 or call 911 if the situation is an emergency.

If anyone has any information regarding these crimes, please call Detective Bambrick at (310) 458-8932 or Detective Ahn at (310) 458-8452 during normal business hours.

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