AKRON, Ohio — A 29-year-old man was arrested after attempting to abduct a 16-year-old girl from an Akron bus stop Friday morning by grabbing her and trying to drag her towards his car, according to Akron police.
The attempted abduction was caught on surveillance cameras. From this angle, an individual is seen walking by while the attempted abduction is happening.
Another surveillance video in the media player below shows the attempted abduction from a different angle.
Around 6:24 a.m., the man, who has not yet been arraigned in court, parked his vehicle on Neville Avenue, near the Metro bus stop on South Arlington Street, police said. He then repeatedly walked back and forth near the girl and initiated a random conversation with her, in what investigators believe was an attempt to distract her.
Seconds later, the man forcibly grabbed the victim from behind and tried to drag her towards his car around the corner, police said.
The girl fended off the man by “instinctively holding onto a chain-linked fence, which helped her break free from his grasp,” Akron police said in a statement. The man took her cell phone but later tossed it to her before getting into his car and driving away.
The victim's mother, who told News 5 she was horrified by the videos, is grateful her daughter, a student at Firestone High School, managed to escape. According to the mom, the teen video called her after the struggle and said, 'Mommy, somebody just tried to take me.'
"It's disturbing. It's nerve-wracking. It's a parent's worst nightmare to be your child," the mother said. "Had she been caught off guard, this might have went the other way, but it was nothing but the grace of God that things turned out the way that they turned out."
An alert with suspect and vehicle information was broadcast, and officers began their search for the suspect.At about 12:30 p.m. Friday, Sgt. John Ross spotted the man driving the car a few blocks away and officers later took him into custody without incident near South Main Street and East Waterloo Road.
"It's scary to think of what could have happened. We don't know what his intentions were. We can guess at that, but thank God whatever his intentions were, he wasn't able to follow through with it," Ross said.
The suspect, identified as Da Aaron Jackson, was charged with abduction and booked into the Summit County Jail, police said. He appeared for his arraignment Tuesday and is being held on a $50,000/10% bond.
According to state records, Jackson has a prison record that includes aggravated robbery. He was released in 2017. He returned to prison for a post release control sanction in 2021 and was released on post release control supervision on April 24 just five days before the abduction attempt, according to spokesperson for the state prison system.
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