Police: Man jailed after kids lured off playground with candy, girl molested

INDIANAPOLIS - Police have arrested a neighbor accused of luring children off a playground with candy and then molesting a 6-year-old girl.

Felony child molesting charges have been lodged against Benjamin Najarro-Asencio, 31, who lives on Governours Lane, where numerous children reported being lured into his apartment.

In August, the Call 6 Investigators reported children told their parents that Najarro-Asencio was luring kids from a common play area with lollipops and other candy. 

Neighborhood children told police they saw him carrying a 6-year-old girl into his apartment while touching her inappropriately.

Police said the girl reported she was touched while she was on the playground, and then again after she and her 10-year-old brother were lured into the Najarro-Asencio’s apartment.

Police told the Call 6 Investigators at the time that they were unable to immediately arrest the man, despite the same story being told by so many children. Detectives said they needed a formal “forensic” interview with the little girl before charges could be filed.

Forensic interviews are conducted by trained sex abuse counselors and police officers, in which specific questions are asked about time lines and exactly how sexual acts occurred. Those interviews are typically videotaped for use in court.

Marion County Jail records show Najarro-Asencio locked up on a $100,000 surety bond, but he also has an immigration hold. Historically, an immigration hold means he could face deportation after his criminal case and any sentence have concluded.

Police said they originally identified Najarro-Asencio from his passport.

Neighbors told the Call 6 Investigators that Najarro-Asencio was often seen watching children on his apartment complex playground, near East 38th Street and North Mitthoeffer Road.  A reporter noted a lawn chair on his back patio, facing the playing area between several apartments.

One woman, whose children also play at the same apartments near East 38th Street and Mithoeffer Road said the neighbor was “a very sick individual.”

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