Brave Vigilante Mom Chases Down Man Who Allegedly Tried to Snatch Her Child

Inspiring 59

Here's an unsettling story that makes me play the What Would I Have Done? game in my own head: on Wednesday evening, a 4-year-old girl was playing in front of her home in Albuquerque's North Valley neighborhood when a stranger picked her up and drove off. A group of teenagers witnessed the kidnapping and raced to tell the little girl's mother, Melissa Torrez, at which point the family called 911. Torrez didn't wait for the authorities to respond, however. She instantly ran for her car and began chasing the man who took her child.

I certainly hope I'm never called upon to find out what I'd do in that sort of awful situation, but I can't help but wonder. Would I have had enough adrenaline coursing through me to take vigilante action? Would the mama bear instinct have completely taken over? Or would I have been flatlined with terror, unable to decide what to do next?

As for what Melissa Torrez did, she followed the man's vehicle for seven miles, before losing control of her car and smashing into his silver Buick near an intersection. The suspect then fled on foot, triggering a massive manhunt that involved more than two dozen officers going door-to-door in the area to search for him.

What Torrez didn't realize is that the suspected abductor had pushed her daughter out of the car right before the chase began, and the little girl was found wandering uninjured near her home. In hindsight, Torrez's decision to follow the man at what must have been high speeds may have been a questionable one -- but who could say how this story might have ended if she hadn't done so? The man likely wouldn't have ditched the child, and who knows what could have happened after that.

In fact, it turns out that the cops are investigating whether there's a connection between this incident and the abduction and sexual assault of a 6-year-old from the same apartment complex the previous week. It certainly seems likely, since the suspect in that case was described as a male in a silver or gray vehicle.

A 31-year-old man named David Hernandez has now been arrested and charged with kidnapping -- and I'm thinking it's all thanks to Melissa Torrez. It took a lot of guts for her to chase this guy down, and it definitely sounds like she stopped a horrible crime from progressing.

What do you think about this lady's actions? Do you think you would have done the same?

Image courtesy of the Albuquerque Police Department

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youth... youthfulsoul

100% not even a second thought.

Laine... Lainey0468 awful for mom!  Glad everything turned out ok and he is behind bars!!!angry

.LoVe... .LoVeMyBuG.

YES I would have most defiantly done the same! And not to bash on the mother but I personally wouldn't have let my 4 year old play alone in the yard, not even for a second! If I need to go inside for something, she comes with me! But I also don't know the whole story, maybe she was in the yard with her and just looked away for a moment, IDK but my guess is she wasn't outside with her. Maybe I am just more protective and cautious than some, I would rather be safe than sorry in this world. 

kateh... katehaydensmom

I would have for my children and for the kids i watch every day and i give her props for not kicking his @$$ I would have beat the hell out of him for any child even one at the park. I also would never leave my child alone outside the kids i watch the oldest is 10 and i dont even let her play out front on her own the back yeah i let them run free in the back but there is also a big dog and cameras everywhere no one goes next to the house with out someone knowing 

jalaz77 jalaz77

I would in a heartbeat. This has crossed my mind, this situation. You talk about a high speed chase and for me I would rather find my daughter injured in a high speed chase than let him get away with her and do unspeakable things to her possibly never seeing my child again. So glad she got he back safely!! Good for this mom for taking matters into her own hands.

Brandi Atkinson

Glad she took action to prevent what could have happened.  It only takes one second for a child to wander away from you even if you are the most cautious person out there.  I have a few questions,  What happened to the first girl?  What is the update on her?  Back home, hospital still where is she???


Jandi L. Spencer

I think she done what she had to do. I know that is what I would had done. I am glad the child is safe and she didn't get into a accident. Majors Kudo's for that momma. and God Bless them both.

Emmylou Collins

"As for what Melissa Torrez did, she followed the man's vehicle for seven miles, before losing control of her car and smashing into his silver Buick near an intersection." She was willing to crash her car into the perp's car, not knowing her daughter wasn't in there, just to stop him. Seven miles is a long distance when the seconds tick by like hours. I'm sure every inch she followed him must have been agonizing for her, and she felt like she needed to stop him. I would have done the same thing, personally. That's why we live in the country and our children play behind a locked fence. No one knows why that little girl was left alone to get taken, and it's a sad summary of where we are in society when you can't let your little ones play for any length of time without worrying about abductors doing God-knows-what to the babies. Harsher penalties would deter some crimes from happening. But, this serial child molester (allegedly) wouldn't stop even if death was the sentence. These people are disgusting and need to be removed from civilization. 

Paula Williams

i commend this mom for doining what she did i would have done the same thing but if i would have accually gotten a hold of him  who know what i was capable of doining expecally if he took one of my children way to go i am glad they cought him now he can rot in a jail cell for aqll i care


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