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Missing girl found in Camp Pendleton barracks; Marine taken into custody

Camp Pendleton Marine Corps Base sign outside the main gate of the base. (UT File Photo/San Diego Union-Tribune/TNS)
July 10, 2023

A United States Marine was taken into custody for questioning after a missing 14-year-old girl was discovered in the barracks at Camp Pendleton in San Diego, Calif.  

San Diego County Sheriff’s Department (SDSO) spokesman Lt. David LaDieu said the department recovered the child and is supporting the San Diego Human Trafficking Task Force and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service with their investigations.

“We can confirm that a Marine with Combat Logistics Battalion 5, 1st Marine Logistics Group was taken into custody for questioning by Naval Criminal Investigative Services on June 28, 2023, as seen on social media July 2, 2023,” Captain Chuck Palmer of the 1st Marine Logistics Group told NBC 7. “The incident is under investigation, and we will continue to cooperate with NCIS and appropriate authorities.”

The girl was found almost 20 days after she went missing, according to a video posted by her aunt Casaundra Perez.

“My niece is under the age of 18 and has learning disabilities. On June 10th, she went missing and on June 27th, she was found on Camp Pendleton. Camp Pendleton is a military base in Oceanside, San Diego,” Perez said in a video posted on TikTok. “She was found in the barracks by military police. She had been sold to a soldier for sex.”

“The military is trying to cover it up,” she alleged. “They’re trying to cover it up and place the majority of the blame on her. However, the reality is, the whole facility allowed this to happen. The security looked her in the face and allowed this man to bring a minor onto base where he then proceeded to have sex with her. Due to her age, she could not have given this consent.”

This was a breaking news story. The details were periodically updated as more information became available.