14-year-old girl escapes kidnap attempt

A man attempted to lure a 14-year-old Issaquah girl into his car on Wednesday in the 22000 block of Southeast 56th St., according to Issaquah Police.

At about 4:40 p.m., the girl was checking her family’s mail when a driver wearing a black ski mask with eye openings pulled up beside her and told her to get in his car.

The girl immediately ran to her house and called the police with her mother. Issaquah Police Patrol Sergeant Paul Fairbanks said that the driver did not follow the girl.

The girl described the driver’s vehicle as an older, four-door car that is small and dark-colored. She was not able to identify the make and model.

Fairbanks said there have on rare occasions been child-luring attempts in Issaquah in the past, but that no child has been abducted for at least the past 20 years.

“We’ve had a few reports [of child-luring attempts] over many years,” he said. “It’s a very rare occurence.”

In Sammamish last month, an attempted child-luring was reported at the corner of 239th Way Southeast and Southeast Fourth Street. A man approached two middle-school-aged girls and told them to go get Girl Scout cookies out of his car. The girls did not respond and continued home.

The city of Issaquah is recommending that parents review safety tips with their children. Children should never talk to a stranger, never let a stranger get too close and never tell a stranger any personal information. They should make sure to travel in groups, sticking to safe, well-lit paths, and they should alert an adult if approached by a suspicious perosn.

Fairbanks stressed that people of all ages, not just children, need to guard against abduction, as it can happen to adults as well.

“Everybody needs to be careful — adults get abducted. Everybody is susceptible,” he said, advising residents to “be aware of their surroundings.”

People should not obstruct their hearing with headphones while walking or running outside, and if they are grabbed by a stranger, they should yell and make as much noise as possible, and run away if they can.

“[Abduction] is a rarity, but it’s something we need to be aware of,” Fairbanks said.

Anyone with any information on the suspect should contact the Issaquah Police Department at 425-837-3200.