OXNARD, Calif. - A teenage girl who visited Silver Strand Beach with a friend over the weekend left upset after claiming a man came up to her while she was in the water and grabbed her wrist in a tight grip.
“My friend was right next to me trying to tug me away but even her tugging and me trying to get out of his grip wouldn’t cause him to let go.”
The 17-year-old girl did not want to be identified. She says it took about one minute before she broke loose and ran away.
“He let me go when he saw another guy coming over,” the girl said. “He could have taken me away even though there was a bunch of people around.”
The girl's mother, Jamey Ashley, says she is stunned by the stranger's behavior.
“It makes you angry,” said Ashley. “You know, this is such a safe beach and you almost feel violated that this is going on around you in your area.”
The girls notified the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office after the incident. Captain Garo Kuredjian says they are investigating it as a battery case.
“Deputies responded both to a residence and the beach so two units responded, one to one location and one to the other to get a statement from the reporting party as well as to try and locate the disturbing party,” said Kuredjian.
The Sheriffs Office is also stepping up patrols around beaches for the coming months.
“As the crowds get bigger in the summer at the beaches, one of the things we do is we increase our presence there and if something like this were to occur we ask that people try to notify us as quickly as possible of these occurrences.”
The person is being described as a Hispanic man in his 50's with black and gray hair and a heavy set body type. He was last wearing a white tank top and black shorts.
If you have any information, you are urged to contact the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office.