FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE January 15, 2014
POINT OF CONTACT: Lieutenant Neal Griffin, 760-839-4444
On Monday, 1-13-14, a local Escondido couple discovered their fifteen year old daughter had failed to arrive at Escondido High School for her scheduled day of classes. Through a series of phone calls the parents learned their daughter had run away with a twenty five year old male, later identified as Jesus Ignacio Miguel-Nolasco. The parents contacted their daughter by cell phone and attempted to reason with her, but were unable to convince her to return home. The parents then contacted the Escondido Police Department and filed a missing person / runaway juvenile report.
On the following morning, EPD established that the young girl was in the area of Shelton, Washington. Escondido Police contacted Sergeant Mike Fiola of the Shelton Police Department who offered up the resources of his department to assist in locating the runaway juvenile. Through the joint efforts of officers and detectives of Escondido PD and Shelton PD, the suspect was eventually contacted by phone. Within a few hours the suspect and the runaway/victim were located. The juvenile was taken into protective custody. The suspect, Jesus Nolasco was arrested for a number of charges to include: 288(c) (1) P.C. Lewd Act with a Child; 288.3(a) P.C. Contacting a Minor for purposes of sex act: and, 288.4(b) P.C. Going to Meet with a Minor for lewd purpose. Other charges are pending.
The Shelton and Escondido Police Departments are continuing to work in a cooperative effort to establish the details of the relationship between the victim and suspect. The young girl will soon be reunited with her family.
According to the California Attorney General, there were over 90,000 reports of runaway juveniles in California in 2012. A significant number of these cases involve girls, ages 15-17. Young girls who become runaways are much more likely to then become victims of sexual assault or physical abuse, or to be exposed to alcohol or drugs or criminal acts committed by adults. In many cases, young girls run away from home after being enticed by adult men. Often times these relationships lead to rape and other forms of sexual abuse, and teenage pregnancy.
Prior to running away, parents may observe a significant change in their child’s behavior. This might include negative contact with law enforcement, a drop in their grades or being truant from school on a frequent basis. A valuable resource for parents and juveniles on this issue is the National Runaway Safeline (NRS), a national nonprofit organization whose mission is to keep runaway, homeless and at-risk youth safe and off the streets. According to the executive director, Maureen Blaha, “NRS is a lifeline for teens. Last year we made 250,000 connections to help and hope through our hotline (1-800- RUNAWAY/1-800-786-2929) online (1800RUNAWAY.org) and offline resources. We provide crisis intervention, referrals, education and prevention services to youth, families and the community 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. In addition, we have a free-bus ride home program, done in collaboration with Greyhound Bus Lines, Inc.” Visit www.1800RUNAWAY.org to learn more.