Woman thwarts ‘kidnapping attempt’ after she saw a man following two girls on their bikes and one child mouthed at her ‘please help me, this is not my dad’
A Florida mother thwarted an apparent kidnapping attempt last weekend after she saw a man follow two young girls on bikes and got a bad feeling.
Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office official say David Daniels, 37, of Brandon, began following two girls under the age of 12 as they were leaving Cherry’s Bar and Grill in FishHawk Ranch’s park square at around 6pm on June 12.
Daniels allegedly told the girls he would ‘supervise’ their way home.
‘He did not know these children, and these children definitely did not know him,’ Jessica Lang, a spokeswoman for the sheriff’s office, told WFLA.
Soon after, she said, Daniels hit one of the girls over the head as he continues to follow behind them.
‘Thankfully, thee children stuck together and rode their bikes to a nearby church and asked an adult for help,’ Lang said of the mother who was standing outside the church that night.
Immediately, the woman said she felt something was wrong, according to FOX News.
‘One of the little girls was mouthing to me “Please help me, this is not my dad.”‘
David Daniels, 37, of Brandon, Florida, was arrested on June 12 on two counts each of false imprisonment of a child and child abuse after he allegedly followed two girls under the age of 12 from a restaurant, hit one in the head and held one in a chokehold
At that point, the woman – who has not been named – said Daniels put one of the girls in a chokehold and whispered something in her ear.
He then reportedly turned his attention back to the churchgoing mother, and told her they had just moved into the area and were looking to help out.
The woman said she then decided to invite them into the church until she had a chance to call the police for help.
‘I engaged in conversation with him,’ she told FOX 13. ‘I said, “Oh that’s nice. Where did you move here from?”
‘He said, “Oh, I am not really sure.”‘
By the time deputies arrived that night, they said they found him walking back to the downtown area and were able to arrest him on two counts each of false imprisonment of a child and child abuse.
Daniels is now being held at the Hillsborough County Jail on a $104,000 bond.
It is unclear whether he has an attorney who can speak on his behalf.
Meanwhile, the good Samaritan says she does not want any recognition for what she did.
Authorities say the girls pulled their bikes over to a nearby church (pictured) where a woman was standing outside, and they mouthed for help
The girls were reportedly leaving Cherry’s Bar and Frill in FishHawk’s park square when Daniels began following them
‘I don’t want to be a hero,’ she said. ‘I just did what I hope anybody would do for my own kids.’
‘There are moms out there who are like me. They are going to recognize the signs, and they are going to know what to do,’ she added, admitting: ‘In that moment, I didn’t know if I was going to have the right answer.
‘But [the children] are fine, and they are home today.’