LEXINGTON Co. — A man being sought in the near abduction of a 9-year-old girl in Lexington County also tried to abduct two other young girls just before trying to grab the 9-year-old, Sheriff James Metts said Sunday.
Metts warned parents not to let their children play outside without adult supervision.
“We don’t want to scare people but we think that’s the best practice at this point,” said Metts.
He described the suspect as almost certainly a “stranger” to the girls – a family abductor has all but been ruled out, Metts said.
On Friday evening, a man witnesses said was in his 30s or 40s got out of a car and grabbed a 9-year-old girl playing with friends outside her residence at a mobile home park at 3941 Charleston Highway near West Columbia. The sprawling community, Rolling Meadows Mobile Home Park, has well over 100 trailers and is located south of West Columbia. It backs up against the southbound lanes of I-20 near exit 119.
When a friend of the girl began screaming, the man let the 9-year-old go and jumped back in his car and sped off.
“We think that scared him,” Metts said.
A few minutes earlier, he said, a suspect who is believed to be the same man stopped his car in front of a yard two girls around 8 or 9 years old were playing and tried to talk them into getting into his car.
When they refused, he drove off, Metts said.
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