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1/25/2018 7:38:29 AM
Posted: 7/24/2002 12:22:58 AM EST
[Last Edit: 7/24/2002 12:25:06 AM EST by Adam_White]
While I am a bit leery as to the kind of environment this girl is being raised in, you gotta admire her resourcefullness: [url]http://apnews.excite.com/article/20020724/D7KV2O181.html[/url] By DAVID B. CARUSO PHILADELPHIA (AP) - A 7-year-old kidnapped girl escaped her captors Tuesday night by chewing through duct tape binding her arms and legs, smashing a window and then calling to nearby playing children for help, police said. One of the children rode a bike from the abandoned building where Erica Pratt was being held down the street to alert officers who were on patrol, Lt. Michael Chitwood said. The girl had been abducted, kicking and screaming, from in front of her home Monday evening and held for ransom. Police were searching for two suspects late Tuesday. Chitwood said Erica had only minor injuries. While being held in a police officer's arms, Erica waved to television cameras and beamed with a wide smile as she was returned to her grandmother's home. "She's an amazing little girl," Chief Inspector Robert Davis said. The girl had been left on a mattress in the basement of the building in northern Philadelphia with duct tape around her arms and legs and covering her eyes, police said. "She was eventually able to free herself from the duct tape, she broke through the basement door, she made her way to the first floor and she couldn't get out, so she smashed the window," Chitwood said. "And she summoned help of a couple of little kids who were playing in front of the house." cont...
Link Posted: 7/24/2002 12:24:03 AM EST
The children pulled Erica out of the window, and one of them rode a bike to where the officers were patrolling, Chitwood said. Erica was taken to a hospital, where doctors evaluated her and removed the duct tape stuck in her hair. Police said she had a corneal abrasion on one eye, possibly from the tape. "Our biggest concern is that the baby come back to us in good health and this is what she did," said the girl's great-grandmother, Geraldine Tate. Police said they were searching for James Burns, 29, and Edward Johnson, 23, who are considered suspects in the abduction. Earlier Tuesday, police had said the men were known to the girl's family and that their names had been provided by two witnesses. Erica was playing Monday with her 5-year-old sister in front of their grandmother's rowhouse in southwest Philadelphia when two men drove up, called her by name and dragged her into their car as she screamed and resisted, witnesses told police said. Less than 20 minutes later, Erica's grandmother and primary caregiver, Barbara Pratt, received the first of at least six calls from a man who threatened to kill the girl unless he received a $150,000 ransom, police said. During one call, police said the kidnappers allowed Erica to speak briefly with her grandmother. Residents said many adults in the neighborhood were down the street at a block party at the time of the abduction. The area is pockmarked with abandoned buildings and roamed at night by drug dealers. Erica's mother, Serena Gillis, had pleaded for her safe return.
Link Posted: 7/24/2002 12:45:32 AM EST
Link Posted: 7/24/2002 4:20:20 AM EST
Link Posted: 7/24/2002 4:31:49 AM EST
Wonder if anyone else has ever had the idea to burn down all the abandoned buildings along with the rapist, thieves, crackheads, and other filth that always seem to find shelter there?
Link Posted: 7/24/2002 4:33:12 AM EST
Originally Posted By kpel308: Remember the Dan Akroyd film with John Candy where Akroyd is the judge of a small town? "Get ready for Mr. Bonestripper!"
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"Nothing But Trouble"... with younger Demi Moore. Mmmmmm. That movie was an utter load of horsecrap. I loved it.
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