Police were pursuing leads last night in their search for a man who abducted a 6-year-old Glen Burnie girl from a playground yesterday and drove her deep into the woods off Ridge Road in Hanover before she escaped unharmed.
Last night, police found the 1979 faded green Dodge used to kidnap Lindsay Saxon from the Point Pleasant Elementary School playground at 2:45 p.m., said V. Richard Molloy, a spokesman for the Anne Arundel County police.
Detectives were preparing a photographic line-up of possible suspects to show the little girl, he said.
The car was mired in mud west of the Baltimore-Washington International Airport, where it had got stuck as the man was driving Lindsay into an isolated, wooded area.
"There's just nothing but woods there," Officer Molloy said. "If he had done anything to her back there, it would have been months or years before anyone had found her."
After the car got stuck, the kidnapper and Lindsay walked for several miles, crossing into Howard County at Furnace Avenue, Officer Molloy said.
During the long walk, the first-grader kept complaining that she needed to go to the bathroom. When they reached a residential stretch of Furnace Avenue, the kidnapper told Lindsay to knock on the door of one of the houses and ask to use the bathroom, Officer Molloy said.
She knocked on the door and told the people inside that a man had taken her from a playground.
The man, described as a white male with dark brown hair and amustache, fled as the occupants called the police, Officer Molloy said.
The abductor -- who told Lindsay he was taking her to the mall -- apparently did not harm or threaten her, Mr. Molloy said.
Police believe the same man tried to lure a 5-year-old near Crain Highway into his car about 10:30 a.m.
Lindsay was making a sand castle with her sister and some friends when the man drove up to the playground, which is located about three blocks from the Saxon home in the 900 block of Point Pleasant Road, Officer Molloy said.
After talking to the children briefly, he grabbed Lindsay and ran.
"He just snatched her up," said Jamie Jones, 9, who was at the playground with Lindsay. "He was running like a stiff man, a tin man. She was pounding on him and screaming."
Horrified, her sister and friends ran for help.
The kidnapping triggered a massive search for the car, involving state police helicopter and at least 50 officers.
Meanwhile, neighbors and friends filled the home of Daniel and Jean Saxon while they waited for almost three agonizing hours for news of their youngest child.
The crowded kitchen erupted with screams and shouts when Officer Molloy received a call at 5:30 p.m. that Lindsay had been found safe in Howard County. Mrs. Saxon sobbed with relief as she hugged her family members and friends.
"My little girl," she said. "Oh, thank God."
Lindsay's brother-in-law, Marty Hyson, could hardly believe the news.
"Oh my God, they found her," he shouted. "They found her, hear that? I gotta sit down."
Lindsay's parents went to Anne Arundel's Northern District police station to pick up their exhausted daughter. She had already been interviewed by detectives, who reported that she was calm and very sharp as she gave them her account of the abduction, Officer Molloy said.
The Saxons brought her home amid cheers and the glare of fTC television cameras at 7:30 p.m. Lindsay clung to her father, but nodded her head when someone asked if she was glad to be home.