DELRAY BEACH, Fla. – A South Florida man is accused of luring a teenage boy into his pickup truck with the promise of money in exchange for yard work and then touching the teen inappropriately until the child got away.
Osvaldo Vicente, 52, of Lake Worth, was arrested Saturday on kidnapping and child molestation charges.
Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Teri Barbera said two teens were walking toward M Street in Lake Worth on July 6 when Vicente, who was driving in what appeared to be a landscaper's work truck, approached them and asked if they wanted to make a few dollars cutting grass and picking up trash about a block away.
Both boys said yes, but Vicente told them he could only take one of them, so the older teen decided to go, Barbera said.
Once Vicente started to drive toward Interstate 95, the teen became concerned and asked where they were going, Barbera said.
"The suspect tried to establish a rapport with the boy and began to touch him inappropriately," continuing after the boy told him to stop, Barbera said in a news release.
Vicente drove south on I-95 and exited in Delray Beach, Barbera said. While stopped at a red light, the boy jumped out of the truck and ran to a nearby gas station for help, Barbera said.
Detectives from the special victims unit used surveillance video and statements from the boy and the gas station clerk to identify Vicente as the suspect, Barbera said.
"It appears that Osvaldo Vicente's motive is to lure boys to earn cash for work," Barbera said.
Anyone who may have been a victim of Vicente is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 800-458-TIPS.