Police: Man grabbed 8-year-old girl walking home in Fairfax Co.

WASHINGTON — Fairfax County police are searching for a man they believe attempted to abduct a child walking home from the school bus last week.

Police released the sketch of the suspect who grabbed an 8-year-old girl last week in a possible attempted abduction. Click on image to see it larger. (Courtesy Fairfax County police)

Around 5:15 p.m. on Jan. 24, an 8-year-old girl got off her school bus near the intersection of Frye Road and Madge Lane in the Alexandria area of Fairfax County and was walking home when a man she didn’t know approached her.

She told police he tried to talk to her, and when she didn’t respond, he grabbed her arm. She broke free and ran away. The man chased her for a short distance before he stopped, the girl told police.

The girl ran home and told her mother about the incident.

“The victim in this case was able to give an excellent, detailed description of the suspect in this case and was able to actually relay it to our sketch artist,” said Kent Bailey, an officer with the Fairfax County Police Department.

The suspect is described as a black man between 40 and 50 years old and about 5 feet, 6 inches tall with a medium build. He has short hair, a short beard, a mole on his left ear and a tattoo on his inner right forearm. At the time of the incident, he wore a black zip-up jacket with gray pockets, a black baseball hat with gray writing, black pants, black shoes and a black or gray backpack, police said.

Police are hoping the detailed description will lead to a quick arrest in the case.

“We ask that people take the time to just look at the picture that we put out and look at the physical descriptors and if they think it’s someone that they … know it resembles, or they have seen him in the area, to please give us a call and let us know so we can follow up with this and hopefully identify the suspect in this case so it doesn’t happen again in the future,” Bailey said.

Anyone with information about the case or who are able to identify the man in the sketch can contact police at 703-246-3086 or at 703-691-2131.

Below is a map of the location near the possible attempted abduction:

WTOP’s Kristi King contributed to this report.

Sarah Beth Hensley

Sarah Beth Hensley is the Digital News Director at WTOP. She has worked several different roles since she began with WTOP in 2013 and has contributed to award-winning stories and coverage on the website.

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