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Palo Alto Daily News

Magazine solicitor nabbed in sex case

This story ran: Friday, Jan. 23, Page 1

Menlo Park police arrested a magazine salesman for the alleged sexual assault of a 17-year-old girl, and said yesterday they are cracking down on the traveling solicitors.

³Weıre working very aggressively at enforcing our city ordinances, making sure they have a license and identifying these guys,² said Menlo Park police Sgt. Andrew Kline.

Derrick Todd Jones, 32, of Texas and Georgia, was charged with sexual battery and lewd acts against a minor for allegedly pulling down the pants of the girl Wednesday.

Jones is the third traveling magazine solicitor arrested in a week. One man was arrested Monday for assaulting a Los Altos resident and another last week for burglarizing a Palo Alto womanıs home.

The sales teams, who come from as far away as Illinois and Michigan, are generally dropped off in neighborhoods by supervisors and are known for the aggressive tactics.

The Menlo Park attack occurred Wednesday on Cleland Place.

The 17-year-old victim answered the door and when she refused to buy a subscription, Jones allegedly ³prevented the resident from closing the door by sitting in the doorway,² said Kline.

³Some words were exchanged and the male subject pulled down the victimıs pants and touched her inappropriately,² Kline said. Jones fled down Woodland Avenue, but Officer Alan Corpuz located him later in the 300 block of Central Avenue.

The victim identified Jones as her assailant, and he was arrested and booked into the Santa Clara County Main Jail in San Jose. Kline said there were some questions about Jonesı identity.

³He apparently has several aliases, and there may be warrants out for him,² Kline said.

Police are consulting to determine if there is any connection between the attack and the suspects arrested in the Los Altos and Palo Alto crimes, he said.

On Monday, another traveling magazine solicitor allegedly assaulted a Los Altos man after being invited into the home for a soft drink. The solicitor and a resident argued, and the salesman allegedly pushed the resident and threatened him.

The suspect , Torrance Fox, 22, of Pittsburgh, Penn., was charged with battery and making criminal threats.

On Jan. 15, Palo Alto police arrested an Oregon parolee working with a traveling magazine sales team after he allegedly burglarized a Palo Alto customerıs home.

The suspect, Joshua Ray Ferreira, 23, was caught after he allegedly used the card to buy Caltrain tickets, then sell them for cash at the University Avenue station.

When arrested, Ferreira allegedly had in his possession mail stolen from a Southern California home several days before.

Copyright 2004 Palo Alto Daily News All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

Palo Alto Daily News

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