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Florida police are searching for a man they say tried to kidnap a 10-year-old girl not once, but twice last week as she walked to school.
Fort Lauderdale Police released surveillance footage images of a white male suspect they believe tried to lure the young girl with candy and money.
The first incident occurred Wednesday morning between 7:30 a.m. and 8 a.m. in the area of 1500 NE 17th Way as the girl walked to Bennett Elementary in Fort Lauderdale.
“The male attempted to lure her by offering candy, money, and other items which she declined,” police said. “The suspect then attempted to grab her but thankfully, she was able to run away.”
The first incident was not initially reported to police; however, the young girl later described the suspect as driving a black cargo-style “big van” with sliding doors and possible damage to the rear of the vehicle.
The next morning, police said the man approached the girl again, this time on foot.
“He begins to engage in a conversation with her,” Fort Lauderdale Police Det. Ali Adamson told WSVN.
This time, according to Adamson, a witness intervened who asked the young girl if she knew the man. While she said no, the suspect allegedly replied “yes” and tried to pass himself off as the girl’s grandfather.
“The witness, realizing that something’s not right, instructs the 10-year-old to run,” Adamson said.
The girl ran to the nearby elementary school and reported the incident to the staff there.
“These incidents are of great concern to us and we need your help finding the person responsible,” police said in a plea on social media, describing to the incidents as a “possible attempted abduction.”
The suspect has been described by police as someone with receding brown hair, glasses and a medium build. According to police, he may also have a grey mustache and scar on the left side of his face.
A $5,000 reward is being offered for information in the case. Anyone with information is encouraged to call the Broward County Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS.
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