SARASOTA -- A 9-year-old child was kidnapped Sunday afternoon from a church parking lot less than a block from his home, Sarasota deputies reported today.
The victim was found unharmed, talking to a sheriff's deputy, and the suspect, Angela Charles, 44, was arrested. She is in Sarasota County Jail on $50,000 bond.
The incident occurred at about 2 p.m., when the child went looking for his bicycle at New Bethel Baptist Church, 2504 Gillespie Ave., according to the police report. A woman reportedly grabbed him by the arm and stated, “You don’t have a mother, you have a brother waiting for you at the store.”
The suspect forced the boy to walk about a half-mile to the Purple Store on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Way. The child was crying and the suspect is reported to have told the child, “I’m your new mother,” according to police.
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A deputy was in his marked patrol vehicle, parked in the 2400 block of Colson Avenue, when he saw the 9-year old child crying hysterically and walking toward his vehicle. The victim reported the incident to the deputy and described the suspect. The deputy spotted the suspect a few hundred feet away standing outside of the Purple Store. The victim identified her as the woman who had abducted him.
A witness to the abduction had alerted the victim’s mother, and together they were searching for the child. They found the boy as he was reporting the incident to the deputy.
Angela Charles told officers, “I’d take him again and take him to my home,” police reported.
She was arrested and jailed on kidnapping charges.