Police on Friday arrested a suspect accused in the attempted kidnapping of a five-year-old who was walking alongside his family in Queens.
Twenty-four-year-old James McGonagle of Pomonok was charged with attempted kidnapping, reckless endangerment, and acting in a manner injurious to a child regarding the incident in Richmond Hill on Thursday, the New York City Police Department (NYPD) told the New York Post.
“McGonagle’s alleged accomplice, an older bald man photographed wearing jeans, an orange polo shirt and sunglasses, remains at large,” the outlet said.
Video footage released Friday showed the child walking with his mom at approximately 8:00 p.m. on Hillside Avenue when McGonagle appeared to exit a red car, pick the boy up, and carry him back to the car while the other suspect waited inside the vehicle, according to ABC 7.
UPDATE: A 24-year-old male has been arrested and charged with:
– Attempted Kidnapping
– Reckless Endangerment
– Acting in a Manner Injurious to a Child less than 17 https://t.co/WXxXyk5JEq
— NYPD NEWS (@NYPDnews) July 17, 2021
The child’s mom, Dolores Diaz Lopez, then reached through the car’s open window, grabbing her son and pulling him out.
Sources told ABC 7 officers were at Brookdale Hospital regarding another matter when they recognized the suspect from the video footage.
“They say the suspect was at the hospital seeking some sort of treatment and was taken into custody. Police say the suspect is undergoing an evaluation at the hospital,” the outlet continued.
Diaz Lopez explained the family was on their way to visit her husband at work when the suspect grabbed her son, whose name is Jacob.
She said the boy initially sat down in the back seat but once she and her other kids pleaded for them to give him back, he stood and she took hold of him.
Police told CBS New York the car fled southbound on Hillside Avenue then westbound on Jamaica Avenue.
“The people coming, and because I’m screaming, the people coming, and they help me,” the mother recalled. “One lady come and called the police.”
The video footage has disturbed neighbors in the area.
“It’s a pretty safe neighborhood. I see kids on my block all the time. I’ve never seen anything like that happen before. It’s kind of scary,” resident Orlando Reyes commented.