It happened Monday on South Prospect Street.
A girl told her mother she was going for a walk, however she didn’t live nearby. As she was walking past hedges, a man jumped out and tried to force her into his white possibly two-door GMC pickup truck. He left the passenger side door open so he could just shove her inside.
Luckily, passerby’s saw the struggle and stopped.
Jean Strickland of Groton rolled down her window and asked the girl if she was okay. She said no and ran to her car and asked to get inside. Strickland told her to get in the back seat with her granddaughter Katie who tried to calm her down.
“We stopped the car, opened the window and asked the girl if she was okay and she said no. And she ran toward our car and she said 'can I get in your car?'," and I said yes, get in the back, she got in the back, Katie let her in,” said Strickland.
Dawn Howe owns the property where the suspect was hiding.
“I was up on the second floor and I just heard this yelling. I just saw a white pick up truck speeding down the street,” said Howe.
The man is described as possibly Hispanic, in his early 20s with an athletic build.
The area is a popular spot for walkers, joggers and bikers. Shore on one side — homes on the other. Coincidentally, a man showed up to trim the hedges on the day of the incident while police were trying to collect evidence. On Monday, the hedges were even thicker with more room to hide.
“Your walking for a mile or so every once in a while turn around, make sure there is nobody walking behind you or notice what cars are going by or vehicles of any kind or people that you’ve seen two or three times on your walk,” said Groton Police Lt. Eric Jenkins.
Police say they have stepped up patrols in the area. They determined that incident was random and said it appeared the girl was just in the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong person.
Police are canvassing the community to gather video from security cameras from homes and businesses. They’ll be checking DMV records for a similar vehicle and closely studying the sex offender registry.