A letter sent to parents of students at Temecula’s Red Hawk Elementary School on October 21 included a sketch of a man who was reportedly lurking near school property three days earlier. But the sketch was distributed by the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department nearly two weeks earlier.
Near the end of Red Hawk’s early-out school day, at 12:50 p.m., Friday, October 18, several fifth-grade girls were walking along the fence line of the sports field at 32045 Camino San Jose when a man approached them.
“The man spoke to the girls through the fence and encouraged them to come to the other side of the fence where he was,” the letter stated.
The girls refused to be lured and ran back toward campus, according to the Temecula Valley Unified School District.
Staff at Red Hawk Elementary didn’t find out about the incident until the following Monday, October 21, and then promptly reported it to police.
When the fifth-grade girls described the man, school officials said his description was very similar to a man suspected of two “child annoying and harassing” incidents that took place at Temecula’s Wolf Creek Park on September 30.
The male subject was described as Hispanic, 20–25 years old, about 5 feet 10 inches tall, with a thin build, short, slicked-back hair, and a thin mustache and beard.
During the park incident, a man approached two female students, individually, and made sexual comments to them outside of a restroom area. Wolf Creek Park is directly next to Temecula Luiseño Elementary.
“One [girl] was a middle-school student and the other a senior at Great Oak High School,” said Melanie Norton, a district spokeswoman.
The district sent out the first parent alert letter on October 1, which gave details of the sexual harassment: “Both girls were able to flee without incident and reported it to their parents who then contacted the police,” the district stated in the letter.
The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department posted a sketch of the suspect on October 7 in a public-safety announcement.
Both Red Hawk and Temecula Luiseño elementary schools are next to public parks. The two schools are about a mile apart.