Man accused of trying to abduct girl, 11, as she walked to school Police say suspect had butcher knife in pocket

March 10, 1996|By TaNoah V. Sterling | TaNoah V. Sterling,SUN STAFF

County police have arrested a man who they said had a butcher knife tucked in his pocket on charges of trying to abduct an 11-year-old girl as she walked to Freetown Elementary School last week.

Homer Terrell Wade, 43, of the 100 block of Furnlea Drive in Glen Burnie was charged with attempted abduction and carrying a concealed weapon. He is being held at the county detention center on $25,000 bond.

Three Freetown students were walking toward the school with an older student from another school about 8 a.m. Thursday when they saw a man hiding in the bushes along the road near Freetown Village, police said.

The students, all girls, were suspicious, police said, because they had not seen the man in the neighborhood before. They got on the older student's school bus, asking the driver to take them home.

While on the bus, the students saw an 11-year-old girl walk past the man, who began following her, police said. The man ran toward the girl, who ran to get on the bus, police said.

When the girl got on the bus, the man left, according to police. The bus driver notified his dispatcher, who called police with a description of the suspect.

Within a few minutes, an officer talked to the bus driver, then spotted a man fitting the suspect's description walking on Mountain Road, police said. The officer checked the man's identification, asked him a few questions and let him go. The officer talked to the Freetown students at the school, then went looking for the man, police said.

Officers found the suspect walking on Furnace Branch Road near Point Pleasant Road. They arrested him and found a butcher knife in his jacket, Vice Principal Donald T. Leuschner said students at Freetown were shaken by the incident, but the quick arrest calmed them.

"I think once they knew that the person was taken into custody, everyone felt better," he said.

Charlene Pryseski, the principal, sent a letter to parents Thursday explaining the incident and telling them that a man had been arrested, Mr. Leuschner said.

Throughout Thursday, teachers cautioned students to walk in groups, avoid talking to strangers and to run to the nearest adult for help if they thought someone was trying to harm them.

Pub Date: 3/10/96

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