PEABODY — A 9-year-old Peabody youth barely escaped abduction Tuesday night.

According to the boy's mother, the youth was riding his Razor scooter only 20 feet from his Swampscott Avenue home when a man grabbed him from behind and attempted to drag him into the nearby woods.

The mother said the man grabbed the boy's scooter with one hand and had locked her son's neck in the crook of his other arm.

When the man loosened his grip on the boy's neck to change hands and get a better grip on the scooter, the youth, sensing it it was his only chance, hit the man and pulled away with all his strength, then ran without looking back, his mother said.

The man evidently made no attempt to catch the youth and fled, dropping the scooter by a dumpster near the Welch School playground.

Police launched a wide-area search with multiple officers as well as K9s, but were unsuccessful.

They located a man behind the Welch School who was running toward Hourihan Street. He was detained, identified and questioned and sent on his way.

Another man wearing a red hoodie, was stopped near Mallias Towing. The 30-year-old Peabody male was found to have an unrelated outstanding warrant, for which he was arrested. But, as of Wednesday night he was not believed to be the man they were seeking.

Police sent out a Parent Notification Letter Wednesday advising parents of local school children of the incident and urging them to take whatever precautions they deem necessary.

The case remains under investigation.

This story will be updated as it develops.


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