ST. GEORGE — Upon further investigation into a report of an alleged kidnapping attempt Wednesday at a Target retail store in St. George, police announced Friday that they determined the incident was not an attempted kidnapping.
A police report was filed Thursday of a suspicious incident that occurred Wednesday at Target, located at 275 S. River Road, involving an unidentified woman grabbing a stroller with a 2-year-old boy inside, according to the St. George Police Department.
“The initial report indicated that a woman tried to walk away with someone else’s young child, who was in a stroller,” police posted Friday on the department’s Facebook page. “This was very concerning and officers immediately began working with our detectives to view video footage and identify the other woman involved.”
After reviewing the security footage and interviewing both the mother of the child and the woman who reportedly grabbed the stroller, detectives determined that the incident was more of a misunderstanding rather than an attempted kidnapping.
“Long story short, the two women were in the same area of the store, shopping,” police said. “The second woman had reached for what she thought was her cart and mistakenly grabbed the handle of the stroller.”
As the woman was letting go of the stroller, realizing the handle was different than a shopping cart handle, the mother of the child noticed and confronted the woman, police said, noting that the woman then explained what happened, apologized to the mother, parted ways and both continued shopping.
The mother of the child posted on Facebook Thursday, urging mothers to be extra cautious at stores with their children after she said the unidentified woman tried to abduct her 2-year-old boy while she was shopping at the store.
The mother’s Facebook post quickly garnered lots of attention with nearly 1,000 comments and more than 4,000 shares.
“We live in the age of social media,” the Police Department cautioned on its Facebook post. “Information can spread like wildfire. Sometimes that information might not be relaying the whole story because it’s written based on one individual’s view and each of us interprets things in our own way.”
The mother of the child updated the Facebook post Friday with the following message:
The woman has been found and the police have questioned her. Nothing can be proved about this incident. I am 100% positive any mother in my situation would have acted the same and searched for help in identifying the woman. I want to thank the Saint George police for their diligent efforts in this situation. The public has been an amazing support and I wish I could thank anyone individually for their love and concern. This has been the most terrifying thing to experience for me and my family and am thanking my Heavenly Father that we were one of the lucky ones. I urge EVERYONE to be careful with their sweet babies when going out.
This report is based on preliminary information provided by law enforcement and may not contain the full scope of findings.
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