It's the kind of nightmare scenario you see on the big screen or television: A child somewhere in Southern California is being subjected to sexual abuse as we speak. That, at least, is what investigators believe.
And the FBI doesn't know exactly where the victim is. But they do have images of two women who might have witnessed some of the crimes or who might know the suspect:
So far those women, described as a white female in her early 20s with a large tattoo of spread wings on her back, and a possibly Latina woman in her late 20s or early 30s with olive skin (pictured below), are just wanted for questioning as witnesses.
The horrific crimes being investigated first came to light via the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in August of 2012, according to a statement from the FBI in Los Angeles.
But authorities believe the abuse is ongoing because imagery of the victim -- the FBI tells us it's a girl -- continues to circulate in online child porn forums, according to the agency.
The child has endured "several years" of abuse by a male perpetrator, agents say, and the nightmare is "currently" ongoing for the girl.
Why do agents think these people are in SoCal? The FBI:
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Information gathered from multiple images relevant to the above-referenced
investigation have led investigators to believe that the individuals with whom the FBI
would like to speak, as well as the victim and/or the suspect, may possibly have ties to
Los Angeles, Riverside or San Bernardino Counties. For example, a red San Bernardino
County "Junior Fire Marshal" hat can be seen in images associated with the victim, as well as images of the victim swimming at a hotel located in the Desert Hot Springs area of
Images indicate the women have had contact with the child: The two are, says the FBI, "presumed innocent." But they might be able to point to the bad guy.
Do you know who they are? Contact the FBI here or call 1-800-CALL-FBI.