DALY CITY -- A one-time Special Olympics athlete from San Francisco was charged with groping a 10-year-old girl after he followed her into a public Daly City bathroom and yanked her pants down, a prosecutor says.

Tony Tou Kuan, 24, made his first appearance Wednesday in San Mateo County Superior Court on a felony count of child molestation, but didn't enter a plea, according to District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe.

Prosecutors say Kuan, who is developmentally disabled, trailed the girl into a bathroom at an office complex in the 300 block of Gellert Boulevard April 8 and then attacked her. But she quickly broke away from the assault, went into bathroom stall and locked it.

The girl saw the suspect get on his knees and move toward the stall, like he planned to crawl into it with her, Wagstaffe said. She slid under an adjacent side of the stall and ran for help.

Police found the suspect after someone who saw media coverage of the attack recognized the suspect as Kuan, who he knew from the Special Olympics, and called in a tip to authorities, Wagstaffe said.

Kuan was a Special Olympics bowler in 2008, according to Ilisa Kessler, spokeswoman for Special Olympics Northern California.

Wagstaffe said prosecutors took into account Kuan's disability when weighing how to handle the case but decided to have him arrested because they didn't want to risk another attack.


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Kuan is being held at San Mateo County jail in lieu of $100,000 bail.

Contact Joshua Melvin at 650-348-4335. Follow him at Twitter.com/melvinreport.