Kidnapped 7-Year-Old Home Safe Thanks to 'Nosy' Stranger

Hero 19

David Douglas Natalie CalvoIf you've ever had a feeling that something wasn't "quite" right only to have your friends or family tell you that you're just over-sensitive, this story is for you! An abducted 7-year-old is home safe with her family and the suspected kidnapper is behind bars. It's all thanks to one quick-witted Target worker who felt something was "off" about one of her customers.

Cops in Pittsburg, California, are crediting Roxanna Ramirez, a loss prevention specialist at the big box store, with saving little Natalie Calvo.

The story goes that Ramirez noticed a man fidgeting in the aisles and acting strangely, so she followed him outside where he continued to set off her "strange-o-meter." On a hunch, she wrote down his license plate number. Turns out the hunch was right!

Later her girlfriends shared details of an Amber Alert, and the guy in question sounded an awful lot like the man Ramirez had seen, and his car matched the description. The Target worker called the cops with the license plate number, they tracked down car owner David Douglas, and voila! Natalie was rescued, and Douglas has been arrested on suspicion of kidnapping.

Can you imagine what would have happened if she hadn't followed up on that weird feeling? If she'd just written it off as being "over-sensitive" and let it slide?

I confess sometimes I'm the one who has called people's "feelings" over-sensitive. Heck, I'd even call some of them a little nosy!

Once someone followed my husband when he was taking our daughter to the car because she was misbehaving (inside a Target, ironically enough) and actually wrote down our license plate number. Knowing he wasn't kidnapping his own kid, I was a little annoyed. But it's stuff like this that makes me feel grateful that there are people who keep their eyes open because, hey, you never know.

Your "over-reaction" could end up saving a life!

Have you ever had that sense that someone was just "off"? What did you end up doing about it?


Images via Antioch Police; California Highway Patrol

crime, child abuse, missing person


To add a comment, please log in with

Use Your CafeMom Profile

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Comment As a Guest

Guest comments are moderated and will not appear immediately.

nonmember avatar mel

Thank you for believing in your intuition. That girl and her family have my prayers.

junecat junecat

What a great story! Many years ago, I was in a department store and a couple were walking with two boys towards the exit. I heard one boy say "I want my mom". They were moving so quickly and I was just a kid myself, but I often wondered what that meant and if they were being taken by force. They appreared to be a family, but why did he say that? Still haunts me.

NoWei NoWei

Yes. Your husband is scary because all men with a child are clearly dangerous. Jesus Christ.


I know you put nosy in quotes but it was wrong of you to have done so. I don't know about your husband and the stranger, but this women was doing her job.

nonmember avatar Sam

This happened in the city that I live in. My heart was heavy that night, because so many kidnapping stories do not turn out well. What a relief it was to hear the next morning that she had been found alive!!

I don't think the employee was nosy, I think that she was doing her job and keeping an eye on a suspicious person. If more people did this, the world would be a much safer place.

nonmember avatar Heidi

When I was a teen I saw a car driving slowly around our neighborhood and it just caught my attention. We live outside of town on a dead end cul-de-sac. I went in the house and wrote down the license plate number. The next day one of the neighbors' homes was broken into. I told my Mom about the car, but I don't remember if anything came of it.

nonmember avatar Emmie

They didn't track down the owner. Another "nosy" citizen heard about the alert and happened to see a car fitting the description. She looked in and the suspect was lying down in the back seat with the victim and she called police. We should all be thankful for those "nosy" people.

midwe... midwestmom8912

Usually where there is smoke there is fire.  When the Target employee saw this man shaking his steering wheel and acting like a potential shop lifter, she was really heroic for going with her intuition that his odd behavior was probably just a snapshot of much more.  Hopefully she has inspired others to be more aware when they are out in public and to be brave enough to alert authorities with important information.

sexym... sexymom37

The employee at Target wasn't being "nosy". You sound like an ass. It's her job to look for people that are acting strange and are doing things that are out of the ordinary. If it wasn't for her quick thinking and the conversation that her and her girlfriends had there is no telling how this story would have turned out. I am so happy that the lady girl was reunited with her family and she is safe.

sammi... sammiesro

i had the cops called on me at a grocery store for popping my son on the thigh because he kept trying to climb out of the cart. of course the lady said i punched him in the face (18months old) 3 cops and an hour later the cops tell the lady i have a right to discipline my child and that a pop on the thigh was the better alternitive to a cracked open skull on the floor.

1-10 of 19 comments 12 Last