Ice cream vendor pleads innocent to luring charge

Kristin M. Kraemer, Tri-City HeraldApril 25, 2013 

An ice cream vendor who was arrested Wednesday after missing a court hearing earlier in the day has pleaded innocent to charges he was seen masturbating after trying to lure a teen girl inside his truck.

Maximino Castillo-Murcia, 41, is scheduled for trial June 10 on charges of luring, communication with a minor for immoral purposes and indecent exposure to a child under 14 years.

Castillo-Murcia had made bail after his April 18 arrest and was told to appear in court Wednesday. When he didn't show, the judge ordered a bench warrant and police picked him up later that same day.

On Thursday, Judge Craig Matheson again set Castillo-Murcia's bail at $10,000.

The Kennewick man is accused of parking his ice cream truck at Monopoly Park on April 17 and telling a 13-year-old customer that she was "his favorite girl," that she was beautiful and pretty, and that she had the perfect body for his son.

The girl refused to come inside his truck even after Castillo-Murcia gave her a free ice cream come and a bag of chips, court documents said.

When a 7-year-old girl walked up to the truck, the vendor handed the younger girl a free ice cream and asked her to leave, documents said. He then allegedly turned his attention back to the teen, who asked the younger girl not to leave her.

The teen handed her cellphone to Castillo-Murcia at his request, and when she reached to get it back she noticed he was partly undressed and was touching himself, documents said.

The teen threw her ice cream and the chips at Castillo-Murcia and ran off with the younger girl. She reported it to school officials the next day and Kennewick police tracked down Castillo-Murcia after finding his truck.

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