Wednesday, November 30, 2005
Sex Registrant Arrested for San Fernando Valley Kidnappings
Los Angeles: The Los Angeles Police Department has arrested a man suspected of abducting and sexually assaulting two young girls in the San Fernando Valley.
On November 28, 2005, at 9:45 p.m., detectives from Robbery-Homicide Division arrested Michael Terry Ward who was identified as the suspect in the Valley Abductor Case. Ward, 51 years old, was arrested without incident at his residence located at 20700 block of Berdon Street, Woodland Hills. At the time of his arrest, Ward was in possession of a small amount of narcotics as well as a hypodermic syringe. Ward lived in the converted garage of a home, which he shared with his 95-year-old grandmother.
Earlier in the afternoon criminalists from Scientific Investigation Division, working with their counterparts at the California Department of Justice, confirmed Ward's identity from a DNA profile in California's convicted offender database. Ward's DNA profile matched DNA evidence recovered during the investigation. Ward is a registered sex offender with a 1983 sexual assault conviction in Ventura County, for which he was sentenced to 16 years in prison.
Ward is the suspect in two child abductions. On October 4, 2005, at approximately 5:30 p.m., a 7-year-old girl was abducted from the sidewalk near Sunnybrae Avenue and Michale Street in Winnetka. She was forced into a pick-up truck and driven to a residence where she was sexually assaulted. The girl was found at 11:50 p.m. when she walked into the front door of a business after being dropped off by the suspect at Remmet Avenue and Roscoe Boulevard. During the investigation over 200 clues were received from the public.
In an earlier case on May 21, 2001, at approximately 8:15 p.m., a 6-year-old girl was abducted from the sidewalk near Criswell Street and Kentland Avenue, in the community of Canoga Park, while riding her bicycle. She was forced into a pick-up truck, and driven to a residence where she was sexually assaulted. After the assault the suspect drove the victim to a residential area and released her.
During the search of Ward's residence, detectives discovered that his bedroom was similar in description to the location described by the 7-year-old victim. Furthermore, Ward owns a pick-up truck similar to the one described by the victims.
On November 30, 2005, the District Attorney's Office in Van Nuys charged Ward with 20 felony counts involving the kidnap and sexual assault of both victims. His bail was set at $7,000,000. If convicted, Ward could be sentenced to multiple life terms.