South Bay

Child Luring Suspect Has San Jose Community on High Alert

Parents and schools in one South Bay community are on high alert after at least three different children say a man tried to lure them into his car.

The incidents occurred earlier this week in the Mt. Pleasant School District, where police say they think they know who the suspect is but haven’t arrested him.

Parents say they’re looking out for all children right now, and they were not happy when they learned why police can’t arrest him.

"Some of our students reporting that an individual was following them and proposing to be in a film," district spokesman Jose Gonzalez said. "So they told the administration and immediately called the police."

Police said they can't arrest the man because he hasn’t broken the law.

"Are you serious?" one parent said. "I mean, if you’re trying to get children into your vehicle, you’re talking to them and they’re not your own, that should be enough for an arrest right there."

Even the crossing guards were keeping an eye out. Parent Bertha Chavez says she’s scared, knowing nothing is safe anymore. While police investigated, parents say they went into emergency mode. Some didn’t want to show their faces.

"We’re all really a tight knit neighborhood here in Mt. Pleasant," one parent said. "And we look out for all of our children. All of our families. So we’ve been keeping a high eye on that"

Police said they know who the suspect is, and they’ve been watching him.

"It's kinda frustrating because you’re not able to fully protect your students," Gonzalez said. "All you can do is just be on the lookout and be preventative."

The district administrator says he was principal once when something similar happened.

It wasn’t until the suspect exposed himself to kids that police finally arrested him.

For now, children are advised to use the buddy system when walking to and from school, and keep their guard up.

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