Lilburn police believe a woman fabricated a story about an attempted kidnapping because she was upset to find a boy playing alone.
Channel 2’s Erica Byfield spoke to the 3-year-old’s father last week. Josh Evans said he was browsing the pants section at Park Avenue Thrift off Lawrenceville Highway and his son was in the toy aisle.
"I was about 10 feet away from Erik. He was in the toy area. He was the only kid in that area. I was looking at the pants, I had my back turned and then a customer came over to me and asked me if it was my son and I said, 'Yes.' She said that I needed to get my child," Evans said.
Based on the witness account, police released surveillance video of a man in a bright green shirt believed to be the kidnapper. Police said the Good Samaritan witnessed the attempted kidnapping and charged at the suspect when he picked the boy up.
But police said when they re-interviewed the woman, she admitted she never saw the man touch the child.
“She stated she fabricated the story because she was upset the child's parents let him look at the toys by himself and were not watching him,” Lilburn police Capt. Ben Hayes said in a news release.
Pamela Ann Strong was arrested Monday and charged with false report of a crime.
"This is a serious offense. The department spent several man hours trying to locate this suspect. The department takes these types of reports extremely serious and when this was initially reported other investigations were dropped to focus on this one. To later find out this was a fabricated story is extremely disappointing," Hayes said.