SAN DIEGO – A Northern California sex offender with a history of parole violations cut off his ankle monitor and went on a two-day crime spree in which he tried to rob or kidnap several women and teenage girls at knifepoint in the San Diego area, authorities said.

Leonard Scroggins, 32, was arrested at a park in National City on Wednesday after police spotted a minivan with a license plate number matching that provided by a purse-snatching victim.

He remained jailed without bail Friday after being booked for robbery, assault with a deadly weapon, evading a peace officer and attempted kidnapping. The district attorney’s office said it expected to charge him Monday.

Scroggins is believed to have demanded money from a 17-year-old girl in Chula Vista about 9 p.m. Tuesday, but she ran off, said Chula Vista police Capt. Gary Wedge.

Scroggins also is suspected of trying to pull a woman into a car less than an hour later, Wedge said.

The woman struggled and was stabbed in the arm before she broke free and ran, he said. She was treated at a hospital.

Scroggins also is suspected of stealing a purse in National City on Wednesday and later putting a knife to the throat of a 13-year-old girl and trying to drag her into his car.

“He kept repeating in a low voice, ‘Get in the car or I will cut you,’” said Guadalupe Perez, an eighth-grader at National City Middle School.

The girl said she screamed and reached for the knife, cutting her finger, then elbowed the man and ran.

“If I didn’t do that, I wouldn’t be here today,” she said.

“I didn’t want to be one of those cases where you find my remains three years from now,” she said.


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