HOUSTON -- Police have released surveillance photos and are asking for the public's help in identifying a person of interest and a vehicle he was driving in a kidnapping incident Wednesday afternoon.
The incident happened 3:30 p.m. in the 1700 block of Wirt Road.
According to HPD Homicide Division Sergeant M. Brady, the victim and her mother had just pulled into a garage at an apartment complex. As the mother was unloading the vehicle, the girl went to look at some ice on the fence in the parking garage.
At that time, a Jeep Cherokee pulled into the garage, made a U-turn and pulled up alongside where the girl was standing. The driver exited the Jeep and walked to the passenger side where he opened the back passenger door. The male then walked toward the girl, who tried to run away.
The male ran after the girl, grabbed her and took her to the passenger side of the vehicle and put her into the back seat. The male then got into the driver seat of the Jeep and exited the parking garage. The mother went back down to the garage and began to chase the Jeep on foot as it left the garage. The mother was not able to stop the Jeep, so she ran back to her vehicle and pursued the Jeep, but lost sight of it.
At approximately 4:10 pm, the male and girl were seen walking into a Target store located in the 900 block of Gessner Road at Memorial City Mall. The girl went into the restroom where she alerted a customer that she had been kidnapped. The customer informed store management, who went into the restroom and recovered the girl. The male left the store before authorities were able to detain him.
She appeared to be unharmed, but was taken to Texas Children's Hospital as a precaution.
The person of interest is described only as a white or Hispanic male in his late teens or early 20s, has a tall and skinny build, with short dark hair. He was wearing a black t-shirt with yellow or green writing on the front, and dark colored jeans. He was seen driving a late model, gray or silver Jeep Cherokee.
At this time, it is believed the male is a stranger and not related to the family.