TEXAS CITY — Police believe a 9-year-old boy who claimed a man tried to kidnap him while he waited for a school bus made up the story.
The Kohfeldt Elementary School student was waiting for the bus at the corner of 19th Street and First Avenue North at about 7 a.m. Tuesday and claimed that a man wearing a hooded sweatshirt and khaki pants grabbed his arm.
The boy told police he got away and went to a friend’s house as the would-be kidnapper jumped into a red car.
The report prompted the Texas City school district to send letters to parents, and police launched a search for the car. Police also increased patrols near all of the elementary schools and bus stops and planned to step up patrols again Wednesday morning.
Police Chief Robert Burby said police called off the search for the red car when it was found at a house and the owner, a woman, said she’s the only person who drives the car.
She told police she had driven to the corner to take some medicine to her son who would normally be at that bus stop, but who instead was at a friend’s house nearby. The car owner told police she saw the boy who made the attempted abduction claim and that he was playing in the street.
“Our objective was to find this car and to make sure there wasn’t someone running around acting silly,” Burby said. “We talked to the boy with his mother (Tuesday night) and his story changed again. We think he was just scared and said what he said.
“We want the public to know there isn’t a stranger danger.”
Burby said despite the changing story, police will conduct more interviews on Wednesday. He did not say what — if any — action would be taken against the boy if it were confirmed he fabricated the story.