Palo Alto police are searching for a man who allegedly followed a 12-year-old girl to her home and kissed her cheek Monday night.
The girl was walking her bike, around 5 p.m., going north on Tanland Drive from Amarillo Avenue and talking to a parent on her cellphone when she noticed a man jogging north on Tanland on the opposite side of the street, police said.
When she got to the apartment complex where she lives, the girl carried her bike upstairs and was getting out her house key when she saw the same man in the hallway of the apartment complex, police said. He walked past her and said, "Excuse me." As she opened the door, with her back turned to the man, the man walked past her again and said, "Excuse me." He then placed his hand over her mouth and kissed her cheek, police said. The girl screamed, and the man ran out of the apartment complex toward Tanland Drive.
Investigators said the girl's parents called police at about 8:30 p.m. to report the incident.
The girl was not hurt and the incident lasted a couple of seconds, police said. She described the man as Hispanic and between the ages of 17 and 35 years. He was wearing a light gray hooded sweatshirt and dark workout pants.
No sketch of the man is available at this time, but if one is produced, the police department will release it.
Police are encouraging residents to report crimes and suspicious activity and advise parents to remind children to remain alert and to tell a trusted adult about anything they see that does not seem quite right.
Detectives are actively investigating this case. The police ask that anyone with information about this incident call the department at 650-329-2413. Anonymous tips can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or sent via text message or voicemail to 650-383-8984.