5-year-old girl abducted, assaulted outside elementary school to lure sister into fight, police say

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A Memphis, Tennessee, family is demanding answers from local elementary school officials after teens abducted a 5-year-old girl from in front of the school.

According to a report from Memphis police, the incident happened at Dunbar Elementary School Wednesday afternoon.

A video recorded by a witness shows one of the teens punching the 5-year-old in the face. Later, it escalated into a fight outside the Melrose High School football stadium.

The girl’s family wants to know how she was taken from right in front of the school by complete strangers.

According to police, a minor sent the video to the little girl’s sister on Facebook. In the message, she threatened to hurt the 5-year-old if the sister didn’t meet her for a fight outside the football stadium.

The fight involved several teens and an adult, after the little girl’s sister told police she went to the stadium to meet the suspects.

The victim was seen in the video getting hit and kicked by several people, while her 5-year-old sister was crying on the side of the road.


The victim’s aunt, Shavita Payne, told police that when she arrived, she tried to get everyone off her niece. But she was then attacked too.

Payne and her nieces eventually left.

Payne said she thought everything was over. However, she said the girls came back and vandalized their home off Enterprise Avenue – breaking a few windows.

Payne told investigators the girls were trying to fight her niece for the second time.

Memphis police are investigating the incident as an assault and abduction.

No arrests have been made yet.

A spokesperson with Shelby County Schools said school officials are reviewing its after-school procedures to make sure students get home safely.

“Dunbar Elementary is an all walking/pickup school and, due to its close proximity to Melrose High, students routinely walk home with their older siblings, relatives and friends. This incident is extremely concerning, and we’ve reported it to all appropriate authorities, so it can be investigated. Additionally, school staff is reviewing all after-school procedures to ensure students are always dismissed safely.”