Suspect accused in attempted molestation of 7-year-old girl already in jail when police caught him

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – A man accused of breaking into a home and trying to molest a 7-year-old girl is now behind bars. Turns out, officers didn’t have to go far to find him. He was already in jail.

Tuesday, the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office filed attempted child molesting, battery, criminal confinement, theft, and burglary charges against 30-year-old Joseph Allen.

Allen has a criminal record, which includes drug and theft charges.

“Very scary, very scary,” said Jana Showecker, “It makes me lock all the doors, makes me check at night every little sound I hear. The world’s getting scary.”

Showecker said she and other neighbors spent weeks afraid to go outside and afraid to let children play after an attempted child molestation just blocks away from her home.

Court papers filed Tuesday indicate 30-year-old Joseph Allen came into a home on Martha Street in the early morning hours of July 27.

A 7-year-old girl told investigators she woke up with a man on top of her, his hand covering her mouth. She told police her pajama pants and underwear were pulled down to her ankles.

“Sick to my stomach, that poor baby. What kind of damage has he done to her? What’s she going to go through? Counseling and all kinds of stuff? She’s a baby. That’s a horrible memory,” said Showecker.

The man ran when a sibling saw him, taking electronic items in the process.

Detectives would later catch the man on home security systems along South Belmont Avenue, circulating images to the media, which brought in tips, leading them to Allen.

In fact, Allen was in jail when police talked to him last week, already charged with theft and residential entry stemming from an incident on Sunday, August 14.

Investigators said he stole a truck from a gas station on Kentucky Avenue and then tried to hide from police inside a home.

People on the near southwest side were relieved Tuesday that the man police said sparked terror in the streets can’t do it anymore.

“It’s always a good feeling going to bed at the end of the day, knowing whoever is causing a disturbance is no longer doing so,” said Rachel Partridge, a parent.

“He had it coming, so, I guess the good Lord’s looking out for the babies, I hope,” said Showecker.

Allen told investigators he came into the home that morning through an unlocked door and went into the child’s bedroom to steal an electronic device. He claimed he put his hand over the girl’s mouth because she was startled. His initial hearing on the newly filed charges is Wednesday morning at 9:30 a.m.

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