Two boys escaped an attack at a Ladera Ranch park where an assailant wearing a bandana held them at knifepoint and attempted to molest them, authorities said on Monday.
The two 12-year-old boys were playing on the swing set at Founders Park Sunday evening when the man approached them and brandished a 4-inch blade, police said.
One boy ran while the assailant dragged the other several feet and ordered him to remove his pants and underwear, officials said.
"It's very sad and I can't even imagine how it was," said Amelia Konovalenko, a resident who lives nearby. "How scary for them."
The boy threw a handful of woodchips from the park’s play area in the man’s face and ran a block away in his t-shirt and underwear, said Jim Amormino, spokesman for the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.
The boy then flagged down a car for help.
"Both boys were extremely horrified," Amormino said.
The boy was not sexually assaulted, police said.
The attacker is still at large, and investigators on Monday went door-to-door in search of the man. Officials said the boy’s description of his aggressor was vague -- a man in his late 20s or early 30s who was wearing a bandana over his face at the time of the attack.
The Orange County Sheriff’s Department is reviewing registered sex offenders near the park, located near Avendale Boulevard and Daisy Street.