An 11-year-old Florida girl was the target of an attempted kidnapping caught on video Tuesday, and the suspect is now in custody.
The video showed the 11-year-old bravely fending off the man who allegedly tried to abduct her at a bus stop around 7:00 a.m. Tuesday morning.
The suspect, Jared Paul Stanga, 30, was charged with one count of attempted kidnapping of a child under 13, one count of aggravated assault, and one count of battery, the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement.
Sheriff Chip Simmons said Stanga has a lengthy rap sheet, including charges for child sexual abuse.
“This animal is off the street,” Simmons told reporters late Tuesday night. “We can once again applaud the efforts and resilience of that 11-year-old girl.”
The girl was waiting alone at a bus stop in the grass Tuesday morning when a white Dodge Journey drove by, turned around, and parked within a few feet from her, the video showed.
The man could then be seen allegedly running from his vehicle toward the girl, grabbing her while attempting to carry her to his vehicle.
The 11-year-old was able to fend off the man, who authorities say had a knife. The sheriff said the girl had wiped some of the blue slime she had been playing with on the suspect’s arm before she made her escape.
Deputies eventually tracked down the vehicle, discovering it was freshly painted.
When investigators took Stanga into custody Tuesday evening, the sheriff said the man still had slime on his arm.