POCATELLO — The Pocatello Police Department on Monday said that an attempted abduction last week at Raymond Park was thwarted when the brother of the 3-year-old girl who was nearly taken screamed, which caused the man trying to take her to flee.
The girl’s father, Pocatello resident Trent Steed, told police that the abduction attempt happened on the park’s west side near the playground during Pocatello-Chubbuck School District 25’s free lunch program on Wednesday afternoon, the Idaho State Journal reported.
Steed told police that he and his girlfriend, Alecia Shane, take their four children ages 3 through 9 to Raymond Park for the free lunch program as often as possible every summer. Steed told the Journal on Monday that the child who was nearly abducted was his youngest, 3-year-old Krista Steed.
The abduction attempt happened when Steed briefly left Shane at the park to go and pick up his niece for the free lunch, authorities said.
As soon as he arrived back to the park, Steed said he saw from his vehicle that a blue Chevrolet S10 pickup truck was quickly accelerating away from the park, police said. Still seated in his car, Steed immediately received a call from Shane who said a man tried to take Krista from the playground area.
Shane told Steed that while he was gone, Krista had asked to play on the slide on the opposite side of the playground. Suddenly, Shane said she heard their 9-year-old son, Chad, start screaming very loudly and Shane looked over to see a man let go of Krista, run to the Chevrolet pickup on the side of the street, enter the truck and speed away, police said.
Steed loaded all of the kids into his vehicle and phoned the police, he said.
Police conducted a full sweep of the area and attempted to track down the man but were unsuccessful.
Authorities on Monday said there was already a police presence during the free school lunch program, but following last week’s incident the department will provide increased coverage for these events.
The case remains active and the investigation is ongoing.
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