FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Lieutenant Neal Griffin, 760-839-4700
The observations of an alert shopper in Escondido have led to the arrest of San Diego resident, Abdullah Sediqi, 64, for multiple counts of possession of child pornography, lewd and lascivious acts with minors, and disorderly conduct by taking “up-skirt” photographs with a cell phone.
On Saturday afternoon, June 13th, a woman shopping inside the Valley Thrift Store, located at 2085 East Valley Parkway, observed what she thought to be suspicious behavior by another patron. The woman noticed a man, later identified as Abdullah Sediqi, crouched down closely behind her with a cellphone in his hand. The woman moved away, but she continued to observe Sediqi as he approached another female customer. Sediqi crouched down low and appeared to use his cell phone to take a close up photograph of the unsuspecting woman. The alert witness continued to keep Sediqi under observation while at the same time she notified the police. Escondido Police Officers arrived on scene and detained Sediqi. During the preliminary investigation, it was confirmed that Sediqi had been using his cell phone to take several images under the clothing of unsuspecting women, two of whom were juveniles. The photos were taken from at least two different locations, a disorderly conduct violation commonly referred to as “up skirting.” Sediqi was immediately taken into custody. Sediqi was booked into Vista Detention Facility for (2) counts of annoying and molesting a child, a violation of penal code section 647.6(a); and, (4) counts of disorderly conduct, a violation of penal code section 647(j) (2).
In California the law specifically prohibits the use of any type of video or camera equipment to secretly photograph under or through the clothing of another person without their consent. The most common victims of this crime are women and young girls in public places such as department stores, grocery stores, parks or any other public place. The victims are often chosen by the perpetrator because the victim appears distracted or unaware of their immediate surroundings. In this case, the alert response of the victim/witness not only led to Sediqi’s arrest for up skirting, but also to the discovery of much more serious offenses involving indecent acts with a child and child pornography.
As a part of the follow up investigation, Sediqi’s cell phone was forensically analyzed by Escondido Police Detective Damian Jackson, the EPD representative of the San Diego Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. The phone was found to contain over six thousand images, most of which were innocuous photographs, but a detailed examination of the phone resulted in the discovery of many photographs that contained pornographic images of children. Some of the photos were of children who appeared to be as young as 3-5 years of age. By the time this discovery was made, Sediqi had been released from custody, after posting bail for his original charges. A probable cause pick up authorizing the arrest of Sediqi on new charges was immediately issued and Escondido Police requested the assistance of the U.S. Marshals San Diego Fugitive Task Force, who located and arrested Sediqi in less than twenty-four hours. Sediqi was returned to Vista Detention Facility.
On June 15th, Escondido Police Detectives served a search warrant on the residence of Sediqi, located at 17472 Matinal Road, San Diego. In addition to being the private home and residence of Abdullah Sediqi, the residence is also the location of the Kid’s Castle Day Care, also known as the Sediqi Family Child Care, which is owned and operated by Sediqi’s ex-wife, Katrien Sediqi. The search warrant resulted in the seizure of all records of current clients of the day care center. Also seized were additional phones, computers and external hard drives; and, 13.88 grams of cocaine, possessed by Roin Mohammad Sediqi, 26, of San Diego, who is the adult son of the suspect.
Roin Sediqi was arrested for possession of a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance for sale. Roin Sediqi was booked into the Vista Detention Facility.
The investigation has disclosed that many of the pornographic images found on Abdullah Sediqi’s phone are of children who were clients at the day care center operated from his home. The Escondido Police Department has contacted the parents of every child who is a current client of the Kid’s Castle Day Care and notified them of the arrest of Abdullah Sediqi. A notification has also been made to the Community Care Licensing Division of the California Department of Social Services, which is responsible for the issuance and revocation of state licenses to day care facilities.
Sediqi will be arraigned in Vista Court, on Friday, June 19th, at 1:30 PM. In addition to the previously mentioned original charges, Sediqi is now being held in Vista Detention Facility without bail for the following offenses:
Sexual Penetration of a Child Under 10, a violation of 288.7 P.C.
Lewd Acts with a Child Under 14, a violation of 288(a) P.C. / 6 Counts Possession of Child Pornography, a violation of 311.11 P.C. / 24 Counts
This investigation is continuing. Anyone who is a current or former client of the Kid’s Castle Day Care, who is concerned about the possibility that their child may have been victimized by Sediqi, should contact Detective Michelle Mayfield of the Escondido Police Department 760-839-4926.