Parent Says Police Not Investigating Possible Attempted Abduction

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DES MOINES, Iowa -- 8-year-old Graciela Fisher is still scared after she says a man tried to abduct her last Tuesday while she was walking her bike home.

"My pedal came off of my bike and I picked the pedal up. I was going to ride it back home and then he got out of his car and I saw a gun in his pocket. He tried to grab me and then I ran back home and then I went downstairs to tell my mom," Graciela said.

Graciela's mother, Lynnette Fisher, says she remembers a scream unlike none she has ever heard before.

"I was downstairs in my house and I heard a screaming that was not a normal," Lynnette said. "I'm fighting with my sister and when I came around the corner she was ghostly white and shaking and talking really fast."

Lynnette says once she calmed her daughter down, Graciela told her it was a tan-colored man with a hoodie that tried to grab her. Graciela also said the man was driving a four door dark car with a cracked windshield.

Lynnette immediately called police, but, she said, "I got a vibe that they didn't believe that my daughter was telling the truth. They never got out of their squad car."

It turns out the police didn't even file a report on the possible abduction attempt. A spokesman says that's because officers were never told that the man grabbed for the 8-year-old.

"I understand that they think that there was a grab for for the girl," Des Moines Police Sergeant Jason Halifax said. "No comments were made though. If there's not a crime committed it's difficult then for, I mean we can do a report but there's no follow up with that case because a crime hasn't been committed."

Lynnette says her daughter did tell officers the man tried to grab her.

"Yes, she said that to them several times," Lynnette said. "No report. No follow up."

And the dispatch report even says, "Her 8-year-old just came in and someone tried to grab her," and "he tried to grab her off her bike."

"Clearly this is creepy and that's probably putting it mildly," Sgt. Halifax said. "A concern for someone to see this kind of activity but a crime hadn't been committed at that point."

Nathan Pickrell lives just around the corner. He says a man fitting the same description as the guy who Graciela says tried to grab her followed his daughter home a few days ago.

"Same description of vehicle, "Pickrell said. "It's a scary thing. It's putting us parents on high alert status to make sure our kids are safe to play in their own yard and walk back and forth from neighbors."

Pickrell says he didn't call police at the time because he figured it was nothing. Now he's not so sure,  and he says he's scared because there is an elementary school just down the street with lots of kids out playing.

He and Lynnette believe police should be doing more patrol and doing more to get the word out to parents in this neighborhood.

"It's really scary," Lynnette said. "Police are supposed to protect us and watch out for us and I don't think that was happening."