A 22-year-old Los Angeles man arrested earlier this week in connection with the weekend disappearance of a 13-year-old Mendocino County girl visiting San Francisco with her family has been released from jail pending charges.
As the Chronicle is reporting, the District Attorney's Office — the leadership of which changes today with the swearing in of Chesa Boudin — decided to delay a charging decision in the case. Only yesterday, the paper reported that the suspect, King John Baylon, was facing 18 felonies including possession or control of child pornography, using a minor for sex acts, and kidnapping for child molestation. It's unclear what prompted the decision to delay charges, but all suspects are legally allowed to get out of jail if prosecutors do not file charges within 48 hours of their arrest.
A spokesperson for the DA's Office, Alex Bastian, simply said that the case remains under investigation.
Following two days of frantic efforts by the girl's family, on social and television media, to locate her, both the girl and Baylon were spotted by bystanders who recognized her at the Ferry Building. Authorities believe that Baylon met the girl — whose name is being scrubbed from the media now that she is believed to be a victim of sexual assault — on the internet. The girl came to the city with her family so that her sister could receive treatment for diabetes at UCSF's Madison Clinic for Pediatric Diabetes. She reportedly claimed she was feeling carsick and she was then seen on surveillance video exiting the hospital. She was later spotted at a local restaurant, where she met up with the suspect.
Baylon was arrested by UCSF police, and the extent of the pending charges against him suggest that the girl may have been recruited for sex trafficking. The pending charges also included meeting a minor for lewd purposes, arranging a meeting with a minor for lewd purposes, contact with a minor for sexual offense, lewd acts upon a child, human trafficking involving a minor, and oral copulation of a person under 18.