The Columbia Police Department is asking citizens to remain vigilant as they continue to investigate an attempted abduction.
On January 25 at 11:00 p.m., officers were dispatched to the 100 block of Greenwood Avenue in reference to an attempted abduction. The preliminary investigation revealed a female victim, 27, was walking northbound on Greenwood Avenue when a vehicle driving southbound turned around and pulled up alongside her. The driver of the vehicle spoke to the victim before grabbing her hair and pulling her towards the driver's side window. The victim was able to break free and ran to safety.
The vehicle was described as a gold or tan early 2000's model Honda Odyssey. The driver of the vehicle was described as a heavyset white male between 30 to 40 years old with dark hair and a full beard that was short in length. He was last seen wearing a yellow shirt.
Although this incident may be an isolated one, it's imperative citizens remain on alert. Keep these safety tips in mind when walking/jogging:
- Avoid walking alone, especially at night.
- Stay in well-lit areas away from alleys, bushes, and entryways.
- Be aware of your surroundings - do not wear headphones or be distracted by electronics.
- If a driver stops to ask you a question, stand at least two and half arm lengths away from the vehicle, facing the opposite direction the car is traveling.
- If you are harassed or followed by someone in a car, turn and walk the other way. Memorize the license plate number and report it to law enforcement immediately.
- If you are followed by someone on foot or in a car, cross the street, change directions, and go to a lighted home or public area to call law enforcement. Do not go home.
- Trust your intuition.
If anyone has any information regarding this incident, they are asked to contact the Criminal Investigations Division at (573) 874-7652, or call CrimeStoppers at (573) 875-TIPS (8477) to remain anonymous.