Girl Abducted from School

The Good Samaritan who helped a missing girl (courtesy of Philly.com)

On Monday, an unidentified woman wearing Muslim attire that also covered her face strolled into a West Philadelphia elementary school and abducted a 5-year-old girl.

The abductor signed in and claimed to be the girl’s mother. Under normal circumstances, she would have to visit the main office to show identification and sign out her student. This obviously never happened.

Instead, the unidentified woman went to a classroom and asked for the student by name. The substitute teacher in charge of the class must not have known the proper procedures because she allowed the student to leave. And as far as I know, the little girl never protested because face it, she’s only five.

As soon as the young girl was reported missing, the Pennsylvania State Police issued an Amber Alert and offered a $10,000 reward. They also used social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter to enlist the public’s help in finding the missing student.

She was found under this slide (courtesy of USA Today)

Early Tuesday morning, Nelson Myers was walking through a local park when he heard someone whimpering and decided to investigate. As he approached the slide on the playground, he could make out a whisper: “Help, help.”

Myers found the young girl wearing only a shirt and hiding under the slide. “When I saw her under the slide, I was shocked,” he told authorities later. The girl also told him that she had “been stolen.”

Although there were no clear signs of injury, the young girl was transported to a local hospital to be examined for possible assault. And to date, her abductor is still at large.

Needless to say, the substitute teacher who released the girl to her abductor will not work for the school system while the investigation is underway and may never work in that county again. And remaining school personnel are currently reviewing the school’s sign out policy to prevent something like this from happening in the future.

As a parent, my absolute worst fear–aside from my child being killed in an accident or dying from some disease–is that he will be abducted. And every day when I drop him off at his elementary school, I’m trusting that he will be safe and protected. So when something like this happens mere weeks after the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut, it makes me wonder just how safe our schools really are.

Have we learned nothing from Newtown?

Posted on January 17, 2013, in Perspectives and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. Having grown up in a time an place where all the school doors were open while class was in session, I find all of this disturbing. We need to identify why this is happening that will give us our best chances to prevent these kinds of problems, Until then sadly the schools need to lock down and monitor extremely close the people coming and going during their hours of operation, a sign in sheet only works if someone is monitoring who signs it and where they go..

    • Absolutely true, Marty. And I also miss the days of leaving your home unlocked, your car windows down all night and such without fear of someone trying to rob or kill you. Things may not have been much safer then, but they certainly seemed safer…

  2. Mr. Myers, wonderful act of human kindness. Blessings to you.

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