A 24-year-old man was charged Monday with following a 12-year-old girl around a drug store in San Juan Capistrano.
Brandon Foust pleaded not guilty to a misdemeanor child annoyance charge at his arraignment in a Santa Ana jail courtroom. His next court date is an Oct. 11 pretrial hearing.
Foust is accused of following the girl around a Rite Aid store at 32121 Camino Capistrano about 8 p.m. last Thursday.
The girl, sensing she was being followed, left the store and told her father, who was waiting in the parking lot, said Orange County sheriff's Sgt. Joses Walehwa.
When the father confronted Foust, he ran away and attempted to hide nearby, but other concerned store patrons who had also noticed the suspect allegedly following the girl detained him until deputies arrived, the sergeant said.
Sheriff's officials emphasized that they do not believe Foust is connected to recent attacks on female victims on and near the Aliso Creek Hiking Trail.
Christopher Michael Lopez, 31, was charged with a misdemeanor count of child annoyance on Friday in connection with one of those alleged attacks.