SAN BERNARDINO (CBSLA.com) — A brave nanny fought off a would-be kidnapper who tried to snatch a baby from her stroller in San Bernardino Tuesday.
Scratches and bruises on Carmen Perez’s arms are battle scars from the dangerous and scary close call she and the infant faced around 9:30 a.m.
Police said the nanny had just removed 4-month-old Chloe from a vehicle and put her in a stroller when a man came at her.
“He went just straight to me like he wants to get the baby or something like that. So I just run because I didn’t want him to take it,” Perez recalled. “So scary, so scary because I thought he was going to take it or do something to us.”
Perez tried to run into the Catholic Charities Building at D Street and Magnolia Avenue. But the predator “grabbed onto the stroller before she could enter the building,” according to a press release from the San Bernardino Police Department.
But Perez refused to let go. “After a short struggle, the suspect forcibly pushed the female onto the ground but still could not release the stroller from her grip,” police said.
When he could not get the baby, the predator who police identified as Edgar Valdez, 35, ran to the back of a business and changed clothes to try and hide his identity.
A group of Good Samaritans followed the suspect and shouted at him to stop.
Martin Aguilar, who was working as a security guard at a nearby marijuana shop, managed to detain Valdez and handcuff him until police arrived.
“We can’t have men like this going around taking people’s kids. That could have been my mom. That could have been my sister. That could have been anyone’s family member,” Aguilar said.
Perez was shaken up and grateful that baby Chloe was safe.
“I feel so scared. But when I saw the baby, and she was OK. I feel good because when I start screaming, all the people come from the side, and he run away.” Perez said.
The baby was taken to the hospital to get checked out. So far, it did not look like she was hurt.