A father and son, Terry and Prentiss Weatherford, were outside in their Louisville neighborhood at around 5:40 p.m. on July 3rd, when they saw a man pull up beside a little girl riding a bike. He jumped out of his vehicle, grabbed her by the collar, threw her into his car and drove away. The witnesses jumped into their own car and pursued him, all the while calling 911. They were able to give a highly detailed description of the kidnapping, including the last three digits of the license number on the red Dodge Challenger he was driving. Other neighbors also witnessed the kidnapping. The witnesses assisted the Louisville Metro Police rescue.
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“It happened quick. He came around the corner, parked his car, (and) got out within 15 seconds.”Prentiss Weatherford, neighbor/witness
Louisville Metro Police rescue
The Louisville Metro Police Department dropped everything as numerous police officers responded, including a K9 unit and airborne units. Two officers were first to arrive at the location: Sergeant Joe Keeling and Officer Jason Burba. Sgt Keeling had called on his officers to find that car, which they did, less than 10 minutes after the broadcast, according to WAVE3. Within 30 minutes the arrest was made and the little girl safe.
Clinging to her rescuer, the girl wept, “I want my Daddy!” She was shortly reunited with her family.
It was Keeling, also a father, who stopped the Dodge and apprehended the suspect, Robby Wildt, 40. Keeling’s bodycam captured footage as Wildt was cuffed…
“It’s like the world stops … every second feels like hours,” Burba told Wave 3 News. Himself a father of four, Burba, who retrieved the terrified 6-year-old from the car, later said he had no idea what he might find as the passenger window’s tint was so dark.The Epoch Times
In the videos, you can see Officer Keeling make Robby Wildt get down on his knees as he is handcuffed. You’ll also see Officer Burba open the door of the red Challenger, finding the little girl inside. The Louisville Metro Police rescue was complete.
Wildt had no family connection to the little girl, and told police he was going to take her back where he found her because he was afraid he’d hurt her. He was charged with kidnapping a minor and was held on a $1Million bond.
Though stranger kidnappings are more rare than custodial ones, they do happen. As a child, I strongly remember the talk a police officer gave to our elementary school class on “stranger danger.” Today, that is often left to the parents. It is an important conversation to have. If the Louisville Metro Police rescue tells anything, it’s that danger lurks in places no one expects.
Featured photo: screenshot via Louisville Metro Police of Robby Wildt
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