Auto thefts, DUIs, and home invasions might happen in San Diego County, but most people don’t expect kidnapping to be added to that list. However, two roommates have been charged with the attempted kidnapping of a 15-year-old girl from Encinitas. The two men have been ordered to stand trial on that and other charges. The trial will begin on Dec. 6, and if convicted, they face up to nine years in prison. This is a serious case for San Diego County and one that’s left people feeling afraid and confused.
Roommates Christopher White and Jeramiah Owens have been charged with kidnapping, false imprisonment, a lewd act against a child, and assault with intent to commit rape.
According to investigators, the young girl was in her driveway on July 26, waxing her surfboard, when Owens approached her. He allegedly pinned the girl to the ground. She managed to get up and make it into her home, where she locked the door behind her.
While Owens was allegedly attacking the girl, White was waiting in a truck directly across the street.
The girl was not injured, but the men were charged with a crime because they allegedly attempted to assault her.
Lying in Wait?
Authorities have gathered additional evidence against the two men, including witness accounts that took place an hour before the alleged assault. Witnesses reported seeing men sitting in a truck and recording videos of them. This makes it appear as if the men were lying in wait, waiting for the opportunity to strike. It’s not clear if they were waiting for the victim in question or if it was a crime of opportunity.
While attempted kidnapping cases can take a long time to figure out, the police acted quickly with this one and made an arrest two days after the alleged assault. They did this in part thanks to the vigilant neighbors, who printed off and distributed photos from surveillance cameras. The photos were of the suspect’s truck. Soon, someone reported the truck in Cardiff, and the men were arrested.
As you can imagine, this alleged crime sparked a great deal of fear in the community, and there were reports of similar incidents. It was soon discovered they were not accurate, though. This was believed to be an isolated incident, and the suspects are in custody. Previous reports of other attacks have been refuted.
What If You’re Charged?
Kidnapping is a very serious charge and one that you should not take lightly. If you are charged with kidnapping, it is important that you have legal representation. You might think you can explain the charges away, but it is always a good idea to have a lawyer in your corner. Everything you say can and will be held against you during your case, and your lawyer will protect your interests. Simple kidnapping can get you up to eight years in a California state prison, while you can get up to a life sentence with felony kidnapping. You definitely don’t want to face that on your own.