At least 1 suspect sought in Phoenix kidnapping attempts


by Christina O'Haver

Video report by Jared Dillingham

Posted on February 20, 2014 at 9:18 PM

Updated Friday, Feb 21 at 2:14 PM

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PHOENIX -- Police are searching for at least one suspect after two kidnapping attempts were reported in Phoenix neighborhoods this month.

About 8:45 p.m. Feb. 6, a 14-year-old girl was standing near her home on the 1800 block of North 38th Avenue when she was reportedly forced into a vehicle.

The teen was reportedly driven a short distance and then released. Police said she was set free for an unknown reason, but the teen's mother said the man realized neighbors had seen him grab the girl.

About 4 p.m. Feb. 18, someone attempted to force an 11-year-old girl into a vehicle while she was standing in front of her home on the 2800 block of West Granada Road, according to police.

Neither girl was injured, but one reported seeing a gun in the front seat of the suspect's vehicle.

"She's doing a lot better," the mother of the teen told 3TV Thursday night. "She's focused back on her life again and everything. It was hard for a couple of days but now it's getting back to normal. I'm still kind of scared. I don't want her coming out here or anything like that."

The girls provided investigators with different vehicle descriptions, but there were similarities in the suspect descriptions, police said.

The girls homes are less than two miles apart in the area of McDowell Road and 35th Avenue.

Police said it is unknown whether the crimes are related, but they are searching for a Hispanic male between 30 and 40 years old. He is believed to have a medium build, short black hair (possibly with some gray), a nose piercing, and a snake tattoo on his right arm. He reportedly speaks both English and Spanish.

One vehicle is described as a dark brown, four-door passenger car similar to a Ford Taurus with dark-tinted windows.

The other vehicle is described as a dark green older style minivan with dark windows, scratches on its hood, and a sticker in the rear window. The van also reportedly had the numbers "1-10" and "1-20" printed in white on both sides, but the numbers might have been marked over.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Phoenix Police Department Violent Crimes Bureau at 602-262-6141 or Silent Witness at 480-WITNESS to remain anonymous.