A man registered as a sex offender with ties to Dublin was arrested on Saturday after an incident involving a girl at a local park two days earlier, according to Pleasanton police.
The situation unfolded at 5:30 p.m. Thursday when two 12-year-old girls at Creekside Park were approached by a male stranger, according to Pleasanton police Lt. Brandon Stocking.
The man talked to the girls and convinced one of them to leave the West Las Positas Boulevard park with him, according to Stocking.
The man bought candy for the girl at a nearby convenience store before taking her to a canal on Santa Rita Road, where he obtained her cellphone number before the two parted ways, Stocking said. No physical or sexual assault was reported.
The girl went home and told her parents about what happened, and the parents then reported the incident to Pleasanton police, the lieutenant said.
Subsequent investigation led police to identify their suspect as Muneer Hassan, a 44-year-old man who dually resided in Dublin and San Leandro, according to Stocking. Police allege Hassan is a registered sex offender who had an outstanding arrest warrant for drug-related charges at the time.
Pleasanton police detectives located Hassan and arrested him at his Dublin home on suspicion of one felony count of annoying and molesting a minor, one felony count of failing to register as a sex offender and having an outstanding narcotics warrant, according to Stocking.
The lieutenant said anyone with information about this or other similar incidents can contact the department at 931-5100.
Stocking also said the department encourages all parents to talk with their children about how to remain safe when not accompanied by an adult, citing some discussion topics such as:
* Encourage children to use the buddy system – walk and play with friends or classmates.
* Avoid solitary areas such as alleys and vacant buildings.
* Together families should map out the safest routes to bus stops, stores and friends’ homes. Teach them to take these routes and avoid using shortcuts.
* Explain the importance of being alert. Even while listening to music or socializing, it is important to be aware of their surroundings.
* Never talk to strangers in person or online unless they are designated “safe” adults.
* Never accept gifts, food or rides from strangers.