Police are asking for the public’s help in finding a man who attempted to abduct a 7-year-old girl Monday before the sight of a police car caused him to let her go.
South Salt Lake police spokesman Gary Keller said the attempted abduction was reported by four children who were walking to school Monday morning. The children, ranging in ages from 7 to 12 years old, reported seeing a man walking toward them near the area of 2685 Main St. He walked past one boy who was ahead of the group, and when he got near the other three children, he grabbed one of the girls by the shoulder and tried to pull her behind a business, Keller said.
Keller said that an approaching police car caught the man’s attention, and he let the girl go before heading south on foot on Main Street.
The suspect was described as a male who was possibly Latino between 5-foot, 8-inches and 6 feet tall. He had scruffy facial hair and was wearing a dark coat with the hood up. He also had dark pants, black boots and a black backpack. His clothing appeared to be dirty.
Police released a surveillance video that partially shows the sidewalk where the alleged attempt happened but does not show the scuffle itself. At first, the video shows the children walk by in the camera’s view before the group is obstructed by a nearby building. Shortly after, a man matching the description given by police walks by on the same sidewalk in the other direction. The building obscures what happened when the man and the children presumably met.
Police are urging anyone with information about the suspect to call South Salt Lake police at 801-840-4000. All calls are confidential and callers can remain anonymous.