Prosecutors charge man accused of grabbing girl in Parkland

Staff writerApril 4, 2014 

A man accused of grabbing a 6-year-old Parkland girl outside her house denied touching the child, according to court records.

Jakeel Mason, 19, pleaded not guilty to unlawful imprisonment and was ordered jailed in lieu of $150,000 bail.

The girl was playing with a friend outside her home on Violet Meadow Street South Wednesday afternoon and crossed the street to go home. Mason, who had just gotten off a bus nearby, allegedly grabbed the girl from behind.

Mason “grabbed hold of a rubber band necklace she wore around her neck before letting go,” according to charging papers. “The defendant then grabbed (her) and picked her up off the ground.”

The girl kicked and screamed until she was able to break free. She ran home to relate the incident to her mother, who followed Mason to a nearby house and called 911.

Pierce County sheriff’s deputies responded and asked two men inside the house to come out. The girl began crying as soon as she saw Mason, records indicate.

Mason’s friend told deputies Mason knocked on his door and asked to get clothes he’d left there. The friend said he had no idea what happened prior to Mason’s arrival at his home.

Mason allegedly told deputies he passed children playing when he got off the bus but denied touching them or grabbing the girl.

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