A man wanted on a warrant for failing to register as a sex offender was arrested after allegedly luring a 5-year-old girl away from her family’s campsite near Lake Isabella with the intent to molest her this week, authorities said Thursday.
David Barrera, a 62-year-old Tulare resident, took the girl to a secluded location at the Keysville South Campground and concealed her as relatives searched for her Tuesday, the Kern County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release.
The family reported the child missing, but were able to find her with Barrera before deputies arrived, officials said.
Neither the family nor young girl had any previous contact with Barrera, according to the Sheriff’s Office.
Deputies say Barrera is a convicted sex offender who had an active felony warrant for failing to register.
He was arrested and booked on suspicion of kidnapping a child under 14 for the purpose of committing lewd or lascivious acts, contact with a minor with the intent to commit a sexual offense, and annoying a child with priors.
Barrera’s previous offenses include annoying or molesting a child and at least one out-of-state incident, according to California’s Megan’s Law website, an online registry of sex offenders.
Inmate records showed he remained in custody Thursday and was being held without bail. He was scheduled to appear in court June 30.