VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) - "My daughter was sittin' right here," Malika Sarmiento explained, as she stood on the front porch of her duplex and retraced her steps from Saturday afternoon.
Around 4:20 p.m. Saturday, Sarmiento's 15 month-old daughter was sitting in a chair on Malika's front porch. Malika turned to go inside to check on her other child, but just as she got the door open she heard her daughter scream.
"A man had my daughter by her wrist; he was twistin' her wrist. He was right here," Sarmiento said as she walked from her front door to the spot on her porch where the man was standing. "He was right here."
Malika grabbed her daughter's arm and leg and was able to pull her daughter away. She said this was the first major incident that had happened on the street since she lived here, but it's enough to make her want to move.
"Actually, we are movin'...just because of this," Sarmiento emphasized.
Brittany Sherman lives just down the street. She said she brought her kids inside Saturday afternoon as soon as she heard about what happened. "You just go into panic mode. It's just nervrackin' that somethin' happened like that," Sherman noted.
But,Saturday was not the first sign of something suspicious going on in the area.
Malika said she and her mother looked out the bedroom window Friday evening and noticed a man who was all wet and had blood on his legs going up to cars outside the duplex and even going up to the home next door.
"He was right here. He seen us. He looked us in our eyes," Sarmiento recalled as she looked out the bedroom window Monday morning.
As a result of the attempted kidnapping, police issued a reminder for everyone. "Parents, caretakers, babysitters, don't take your eyes off your child. If you have to go inside to do something, take the child with you," Valdosta Police Department Cpt. Bobbi McGraw emphasized.
The suspect was described as a white man between 5 ft. 9 in. and 5 ft. 10 in., around 170 lbs. with brown hair and a scar on the left side of his face. He was last seen wearing a peach colored shirt, jeans, and gray and white running shoes.
Detectives urge the public to contact the Valdosta Police Department or the crime tip line if they have any information concerning this case at 229-293-3091 or 229-293-3145 for Bureau of Investigations.