A man suspected of trying to pull a 13-year-old Auburn girl into his truck told police he thought the teen was his sister-in-law.
King County prosecutors are expected to charge the 43-year-old man with second-degree kidnapping. He is set to appear in court Wednesday (June 13) and is being held in lieu of $100,000 bail.
The incident took place Friday morning as the girl walked down M Street to school.
Court documents give this account:
As the girl walked, she heard a car horn and “hesitantly waved” because the purple truck resembled one driven by her friend’s father. She continued on but noticed the same truck creeping behind her as she approached 17th Street Southeast.
After following her for three blocks, the driver pulled up beside the girl and asked if she wanted a ride. She politely declined and kept walking.
A few minutes later, the truck’s engine revved and drove straight for the girl.
She ran into a yard and “felt the male grab her around the rib cage area,” according to the court document.
"I felt him touch me," the girl told Komo News. "He tried to grab me and like push me back so he could get a good grip on me, but he wasn’t able to. At that point, I literally thought I was going to be kidnapped."
She broke away and hid in a stranger’s backyard. She called 911 and told dispatchers a man who'd tried to pull her into his truck was driving around the neighborhood, looking for her.
Surveillance footage from a nearby gas station shows the man sitting at the pumps for several minutes and slowly pulling forward once the girl appears.
Police tracked down the driver by running the truck’s license plate number. When interviewed by officers, he allegedly said he’d had his truck all day and only gone to work.
Officers told him his truck could be seen on surveillance video captured at the gas station, and the man admitted he’d stopped for gas. He denied trying to kidnap the girl.
The man said that “when he first saw (the girl) he thought she looked like his sister-in-law, so he turned around to offer her a ride,” documents show.
He was arrested on suspicion of second-degree kidnapping and held on a warrant for first-degree trespassing in Pierce County.