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Neighbors troubled after man attempted to kidnap a 7-year-old girl in Salinas

SALINAS, Calif. (KION-TV)- A 7-year-old girl is safe tonight after Salinas Police say she was nearly kidnapped on Saturday night.

Investigators say 31-year-old Sonny Lobos Velasco, is accused of trying to take the girl from her home on the 600 block of Kirkwood Avenue.

Neighbors in the area were shocked to hear about what happened.

"This neighborhood is really quiet," said Arizona Moreno who lives on Kirkwood Avenue. "There's nothing that goes on around here, right here, that it was just shocking to me."

Police say Velasco walked into an unlocked home, grabbed a 7-year-old by her wrists, and exposed himself to her.

Investigators say the brave 7-year-old girl saved herself after she was able to break free and tell her family what had happened.

Police say they were able to find the suspect nearby and arrest him.

"Once the little girl was able to escape from his grasp, basically a neighbor pointed out to which one he was," said Salinas Police Commander Brian Johnson. "And, that's when the officers arrived and went and arrested him at that point,"

Moreno lives nearby and says she usually lets her kids play outside while she does her laundry. But with all of her kids under the age of 10, she says she's making changes.

"Before I would let them, you know, come outside and play a little bit and I would just be outside doing laundry," said Moreno. "But now that that's going to change for me, like I don't want to leave the house.

Police say Velasco faces multiple charges including attempted kidnapping, child cruelty, and other charges related to the incident.

Velascos' bail is currently set at $250,000.

A spokesperson for The Monterey County District Attorney's Office told KION that on Tuesday they expect to receive the police report and formally charge Velasco at that time.

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Dania Romero

Dania Romero is an reporter at KION News Channel 46.


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