MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Miami police officers hit the streets early Tuesday morning as they tried to develop information which would lead them to a man and woman who abducted and raped an 11-year old girl last week.
Officers went door to door in a Model City neighborhood with a sketch of the man they say sexually assaulted the girl. They said until the pair caught children in that neighborhood, and across South Florida, could be in danger.
As she went from one residence to the next, Miami Police Sgt. Nerly Papier said she hoped old fashioned police tactics would help them develop a lead.
“We’re trying to get the public to come out and give us some information. A lot of people don’t know any better or they don’t want to get involved but if you actually come out and knock on their door, they’re more willing to give you what they might have seen,” said Papier.
Papier said maybe neighbors saw the light blue or silver blue 4 door SUV the predators were riding in when they lured the 11 year old inside a house near NW 15th Avenue and 50th street as she walked home from school last Thursday.
Or maybe they saw the rapist, described as a Spanish-speaking male with a large stomach, short spiky hair and tattoos on his arms which may include an eagle.
Or maybe they know his accomplice, a woman with purple or dark burgundy hair who also spoke Spanish.
Or maybe they know the house where the sexual assault happened. It was described as a white house with blue trim which the girl said was “junky looking.”
“I was shocked due to it being right in the neighborhood, right by my house and I have two little girls myself,” said Nicole Jackson.
Jackson said she wished she had information which would help police. The kidnapping and rape has her guard up with her own kids.
“I let her look at the picture of the man, and I told her, don’t talk to strangers,” said Jackson.
Papier and her fellow officers work in the Special Victim’s Unit. It’s a tough gig, especially for this mother of two.
“I try not to let it stick with me, when I go home I try to leave it at work,” said Papier.
Papier said she’ll sleep better at night if they can stop these predators before they strike again.
“Even if it is their first, which I doubt, the way they did everything, it’s definitely not going to be their last,” said Papier.
The girl was abducted last Thursday afternoon. Police said the girl was walking home from Allapatah Elementary when the duo abducted her, drove he to a vacant home, and sexually assaulted her. They then released her near where they abducted her.
As for why it took police four days to warn the community, Miami Police Sgt Freddie Cruz said working with an underage rape victim takes more time than in other cases. He says they released the suspect sketch to the media as soon as they had it.
Police plan to return to the neighborhood Tuesday afternoon to hand out more fliers and talk with residents who weren’t home in the morning hours.