Blue Security has warned residents to be vigilant when children are playing outside following the arrest of an alleged child abductor, in Umbilo this morning.
Blue Security community and media liaison officer Andreas Mathios said a three-year-old boy was playing in the yard of his Umbilo home when the suspect, a woman who appeared to be about 35 years old, grabbed him and attempted to flee. The incident occurred at around 8.50 am. “When the child’s mother approached the suspect she became defensive and refused to hand the child back to his mother. Members of the community assisted the mother and managed to get the child away from the suspect,” he said.
Our armed response officer was alerted to the scene where the suspect was standing outside a local shop. “The mother of the child identified the suspect and further advised that she had often been seen begging in the area. Our officer placed the suspect under arrest. Members of the Umbilo SAPS responded to the scene and took over,” he said.
Police took the suspect into custody for further investigation.
Mathios advised parents and domestic workers caring for children at home to be vigilant and to always keep a close eye on children when they are playing outside during the day. “Parents need to alert their domestic workers to this incident and warn them to make sure that children are safe when playing outside at home. It’s convenient for parents and domestic workers, who are often also busy with housework, to allow young children to venture outside to play alone during the day but it’s important to make sure there is always adequate adult supervision, especially of younger children,” he said.
“Parents should also brief older children regarding the dangers of anyone approaching them from outside the property and they should also be educated about their home alarm system and panic buttons so that they can immediately call for help in an emergency,” he said.