More patrols at SWFL mall after attempted kidnapping

Posted at 7:58 PM, Oct 19, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-19 19:58:58-04

FORT MYERS, Fla. - The Fort Myers Police Department will increase patrol around the Edison mall, after a man tried to approach a woman's 3-year-old daughter and grab her by the arm.

The mother told police she was able to scare him away before he touched her child on Monday. She described him as a white male, approximately 6'2” to 6'4" tall, wearing khaki pants and a khaki shirt. He had an average build with blonde greasy hair and was wearing what were described as specialized medical shoes. "It's scary because I have a 4-year-old and a 7-year-old and it makes me want to be more aware and on alert," said one mom at the mall.

Fort Myers Police Chief, Derrick Diggs, tells 4 In Your Corner patrols will be increased at the mall because of the incident. "We'll up our security as always, because the last thing we want to have is something like an abduction."

The chief explained extra officers are also always on duty for Halloween. "We also got to make sure parents, when they take their kids to the malls, that they're aware of their surroundings," he said.

The Edison Mall assured they will work with police after the incident. They sent 4 In Your Corner the following statement:

“The safety of our shoppers, retailers and employees is our top priority. We are working closely with the Fort Myers Police Department as they investigate this incident. For more information, please contact the Fort Myers Police Department directly at (239) 321-7700.” – Ruben Irizarry, General Manager of Edison Mall.

Police say right now there are no pictures or video, but if anyone has any information, you're urged to contact Detective Nicolas Toma of the Fort Myers Police Department at (239) 321-7812.