Man accused of kidnapping, molesting 3-year-old Oak Park girl pleads not guilty

Posted at 4:05 PM, Aug 15, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-15 20:48:11-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- The register sex offender accused of kidnapping and raping a three-year-old Oak Park girl pleaded not guilty to five felony counts Wednesday. 

Francisco "Freddy" Diaz now faces up to life in prison if convicted. Diaz is being held without bail. 

The young girl’s father, Silvester Soltero, says he was working on his car when his neighbor broke into a bedroom window, grabbing his sleeping daughter.

Soltero says Diaz’ mother brought his daughter home, but she wasn’t wearing any pants. Soltero said when he asked his daughter what happened, she told him the man touched her private parts.

RELATED: Man arrested after three-year-old says she was kidnapped and touched

When the father asked who the man was, Soltero said his daughter pointed to Diaz. When the father approached Diaz, Soltero said he became hostile, even threatening to kill him if he snitched.

The two men then started fighting when Diaz reportedly tried to poke Soltero in the eye with a fork. After he ran off, San Diego Police caught Diaz a short distance away. After his arrest, Soltero learned his neighbor was a registered sex offender.

“They should have told me, they should have told me I was living next to a pedophile, If I had known I wouldn’t have brought my daughter around here, there’s no way in hell," he said.

Diaz was convicted in 2006 for molesting three girls on the playground near Oak Park Elementary School, right across the street from his mother’s house. Diaz was sentenced to eight years in prison, in part because he already had a criminal history. In 2000, Diaz was convicted of assault with a deadly weapon and making a terrorist threat.

San Diego Police say Diaz was in full compliance with the terms of Megan's Law. He is required to check in with police every year and he does so, said Lt. Jason Weeden.

Because Diaz' child molestation convictions were misdemeanors, he doesn't have to steer clear of schools and playgrounds. Soltero says if that's true, the law should be changed. “If you’re a sex offender you shouldn’t be by a school, period," he said.