A homeless man was in custody Saturday morning suspected of attempting to kidnap a six-year-old girl who was visiting Venice Beach with her family.
The suspect approached the girl on Saturday, Jan. 4 around 7 p.m. and told her that he had to "save her," then followed the girl until she was placed in her mother's lap, who was sitting outside of a restaurant, according to the Los Angeles Police Department. The exact location of the incident was not disclosed by police.
The suspect, identified as Evan McLaurin-Nelson, 31, reached for the child, but was pushed away by a member of the victim's family. Nelson tried to grab the girl again, but was taken down by a family member, who wrestled with Nelson on the ground until LAPD Pacific Division officers arrived and took Nelson into custody, police said.
Nelson is a former resident of Las Vegas who appears to have moved to Los Angeles three years ago and was believed to be homeless. He has a criminal record in California and Nevada that includes battery, indecent exposure, false imprisonment and disorderly conduct, police said.
Anyone who witnessed this attempted kidnapping was asked to call Pacific Division robbery Detective Carlos Carias at 310-482-6372.
Anonymous tips can be called in to Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477 or submitted online at lacrimestoppers.org.