An Emeryville Police Department media advisory noted an attempted kidnapping of a child today at the intersection of 48th and San Pablo Ave. Emeryville Police Officers responded to a report of an attempted kidnapping and were able to locate and detain a male subject matching the description provided by the caller. The location of the incident was directly across the street of the newly opened Emeryville Center of Community Life.
The juvenile, who was identified as a five-year old female, was being held by a family member when the male subject approached and reportedly attempted to grab the child twice. The family member accompanying the child was able prevent this by pulling the child away and screaming for help causing the male subject to flee the area. It was unknown if the child was in fact a student of the ECCL.
A male subject meeting the description of the suspect was detained soon after by Emeryville Officers and identified by the family member. He was placed under arrest for attempted kidnapping, child endangerment and a probation violation. The suspect was later identified as Eddie Fontenette, a reported transient who lives in Berkeley. It was determined by the EPD that the suspect was acting on his own and there are no other persons of interest sought by the EPD at this time.
“The suspect is a known transient and we’ve had prior contacts with him” according to EPD Sargeant Cassianos. An internet search turned up a March arrest for an Eddie Fontenette on the Berkeley Crime Blotter that Berkeleyside provides. The Berkeleyside report notes Fontenette as being arrested on suspicion of felony sexual battery and was held on $10,000 bail at Santa Rita Jail where he is also being held now.
“With the expansion of our camera surveillance system now also in place at the ECCL campus, we will offer to assist the police department with any available camera footage of this incident” noted EUSD Superintendent Dr. John Rubio in an email addressed to parents and guardians of students who attend the ECCL. “We will also continue to strengthen our security and safety procedures around the school so we can continue to keep all of your children safe on our school premises.”
Anyone who may have witnessed this incident is encouraged to contact the Emeryville Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Unit at (510) 596-3700. Since this is breaking news, we will update this story as new information becomes available.