FT LAUDERDALE (CBS4) – Parents held their children a little tighter Tuesday morning before they dropped them off at the Boys and Girls Club of Ft. Lauderdale, one day after a nine-year old girl said a man tried to abduct her.
“It’s terrifying,” said Shawender Taylor, “I have girls of my own and I can only imagine what the parents must be going through.”
Ft. Lauderdale police said the girl was walking in the area of NW 9th Avenue and NW 2nd Street on Monday when a man driving a new model white Chevrolet Impala pulled her off the street and into the car.
“He grabbed her. He threw her into his vehicle and then he attempted to drive away from the area,” said police spokeswoman said Det. DeAnna Greenlaw.
The child was able to escape before he could drive off. The Boys and Girls Club said the girl was walking to the facility for camp when she was grabbed. After she got away, she ran inside and told the employees what had happened.
“She was crying when I came in. I was sad and I was like ‘Are you okay?’ and she said ‘Yeah’,” said the girl’s friend Jaden Brown. “She was brave enough to escape. It’s a miracle, she’s very lucky the man didn’t tie her up or anything.”
“She was a trooper, smart girl and someone else was on her side,” said Taylor.
While the little girl was not hurt, kids at the club are still shaken up.
“I just hope that don’t happen to me. That’s why my mommy said I can’t walk up and down the streets no more,” said Brianna Cornelius.
Some parents have used the scare as an opportunity to talk to their kids about stranger danger.
“Just be aware of the situation. Don’t get in to cars with people you don’t know,” said Fabaiola Beauchamps. “Just to give her an idea of what’s going on. I don’t want to scare her but at the same time shield her from what happened.”
“I always tell my daughter and kids, scream, do whatever you got to do to get away, but I try to not let them be alone anyway,” said Leroy Givens.
Investigators tell us they are working with the child to create a sketch of the suspect. At this point police have only given us very vague information about what this man might look like.
If you know anything and can help the Fort Lauderdale Police solve this case call Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS.