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  • 21 Nov 2014

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Girl's kidnapping story turns out to be a lie

Portland police say an attempted kidnapping reported Thursday, May 2, by a 16-year-old David Douglas High School student did not happen.

Police said Monday that the student apparently lied about the incident. After an intensive investigation into the reported crime, police reported that the girl's story did not hold up.

The girl, whose name was not released, told police that she escaped from the kidnapper after the man became spooked at the sight of police cars in the area.

Originally, the girl told police that she was walking home from school at about 4:30 p.m. May 2 near Ventura Park, at Southeast 113th Avenue and Stark Street, when she said a man from a white van she had seen just a few minutes earlier, grabbed her from behind and forced her into the van.

The victim told police that the man drove north on 113th Avenue to East Burnside Street, where he saw a passing police car and ordered her out of the vehicle.

The girl told police the man was dark-skinned, possibly Hispanic, 35 to 40 years old, about 5-foot-7, with short black, buzz-cut hair. He was unshaven, and was wearing a dark-colored T-shirt, and had multiple tattoos covering both his forearms. He did not speak much, but was described as having spoken in English, with a slight foreign accent.

Police officers and detectives spent the weekend interviewing potential witnesses and canvassing the neighborhood surrounding the park to verify the victim's story. Missing Persons Unit detectives began to note inconsistencies in the victim's version of the events leading up to, during and after the alleged abduction.

Detectives met with the victim again Monday morning, at which time she was confronted with the facts of the investigation, the inconsistencies in her statements, as well as a lack of evidence to support her story. The young woman confessed that she had not been the victim of a kidnapping, or of any other crime.

The young woman told detectives she had been scared by an adult Hispanic male driving a van, after he had honked at her and had seemed to be following her. As the girl neared Ventura Park, the man parked his van and called out to her, which she had interpreted as threatening behavior. She ran from the area, and later decided to report that she had been kidnapped.

The young woman has confessed that the man never approached her, nor did he ever attempt any physical contact with her.