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Police Credit Target Employee With Tip That Found Abducted Child

Police are lauding a Target store employee whose gut instinct led to the capture of a kidnapping suspect in Antioch and the swift return of his young victim to her family.

Around 6:45 p.m. last Friday, 43-year-old Antioch resident David Allen Douglas abducted a 7-year-old girl from in front of her home in the 3800 block of Hummingbird Drive, according to police. Police say Douglas had followed the girl and her mother home from a nearby Walmart and kidnapped the girl just after she returned home.

Several hours prior, Douglas visited the Target at 4301 Century Blvd. in Pittsburg, where he caught the eye of loss prevention agent Roxanna Ramirez, Antioch police Lt. Tammany Brooks said. Ramirez was monitoring the store's security camera system when she noticed a man acting strangely. While he never committed any crimes in the store, "his behavior was such that she felt it was odd and continued to watch him," Brooks said. "She just felt something wasn't right with him," he said. After Douglas exited the store, Ramirez noticed that he remained in his car for a long period of time, giving her a chance to capture his license plate.

When she left work hours later, the employee heard from a friend about the Antioch kidnapping and subsequent Amber Alert and realized that the descriptions of the suspect and his car were highly similar to the suspicious man she had seen at her store. Brooks said Ramirez called police and gave them the suspicious man's license plate number, which led officers to trace the car to Douglas, whom they learned frequents the Antioch Marina. Police quickly dispatched officers to the marina, where they located Douglas with the girl inside his parked car. The 7-year-old had no apparent injuries and was quickly reunited with her family, according to police.

Douglas was arrested on suspicion of kidnapping and taken to county jail in Martinez, where he is being held on $4 million bail. Brooks said police are investigating the possibility that Douglas attempted a separate kidnapping in Antioch prior to last Friday's abduction. Detectives believe Douglas did not know his victim or her family and that she was randomly targeted, the lieutenant said. Police are expected to present the case to the Contra Costa County District Attorney's Office on Wednesday.

Copyright © 2014 by Bay City News, Inc. -- Republication, Rebroadcast or any other Reuse without the express written consent of Bay City News, Inc. is prohibited.
sadie January 13, 2014 at 10:28 PM
I thought it was a young african-american girl who was parked near him at waterfront
Vanessa Castañeda (Editor) January 14, 2014 at 07:07 PM
Where did you hear that?
Julie Deane February 02, 2014 at 11:06 AM
Yep Sadie, I saw that somewhere too. She was parked next to his car at the Marina. He was supposedly walking around his car, talking on the phone or something like that. She got suspicious, started honking her horn, and the police came. Something like that. Oh also, she had called her sister and the sister said, a girl had been kidnapped.... ya da ya da. I heard that too. Unless the Target store employee and the girl from the marina are sisters. Who knows, sometimes the real story doesn't come out for a while. Or there could be two people involved in saving her and they only talk about one. Either way, I'm so very happy this had a good ending and the little girl was found safe, and brought home to her family. This could have ended very differently.
sadie February 03, 2014 at 01:31 AM
@Vanessa C. It was on tv news right after he was captured and child rescued. Not later like this article.

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