News Releases

September 23, 2015: Man Ordered to Stand Trial, Arraigned for Kidnapping 2-Year-Old from Gardena Car Wash

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Ricardo Santiago, Public Information Officer
(213) 257-2000

A Torrance man held to answer on charges that he sexually assaulted a 2-year-old girl after taking her from a car wash in Gardena was arraigned today, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

Deputy District Attorney Frank Dunnick said Michael David Ikeler (dob 10/21/78) pleaded not guilty today to one count of lewd act upon a child under the age of 14 with a special allegation that the crime was committed during the course of a kidnapping and two counts of sexual penetration of a child under age 10.

The defendant was ordered to stand trial in case YA092277 after a preliminary hearing on Sept. 9.

A pretrial hearing for Ikeler is scheduled for Oct. 21 in Department C of the Los Angeles County Superior Court, Torrance Branch.

On April 2, 2015, a woman was washing her vehicle at a car wash on Western Avenue while her two daughters waited outside of the car. According to court testimony, the older daughter notified her mother that the 2-year old had disappeared.

The young victim was found hours later sitting on the ground by herself near a garbage dumpster at a Cudahy restaurant parking lot, the prosecutor said.

Ikeler faces a possible maximum sentence of 40 years to life in state prison if convicted of all charges.

The defendant remains in custody on $1 million bail.

The case remains under investigation by the Gardena Police Department.