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Man tried to abduct girl, 13, in St. Pete, police say
Published:   |   Updated: May 16, 2013 at 09:08 PM

St. Petersburg police are searching for a man who tried to abduct a 13-year-old girl as she was walking home from school on Tuesday.

The girl was walking south on 31st Street about 4:45 p.m. when she passed a vacant home with two men on the porch at 601 31st St. South, said Mike Puetz, spokesman for the St. Petersburg Police Department.

One of the men called out to the girl but she ignored him and kept walking, Puetz said.

The man then ran up behind the girl and grabbed her, pulling her to the ground, Puetz said. The girl screamed and tried to fight but the man held on to her and dragged her toward the vacant home, where the second man was still sitting on the porch, Puetz said.

As the girl continued to struggle, the suspect hit her, Puetz said.

Based on what the suspect said, police believe the attack was sexually motivated, Puetz said.

A third man who saw the attack ran to the girl's aid, pushing the suspect and yelling at him to let the girl go, Puetz said.

The girl was able to get away and ran home where she reported the attack to her mother, who called police, Puetz said.

The girl had physical injuries which were consistent with her story, Puetz said.

The girl said she had seen the two suspects in the neighborhood in the past but does not know them, Puetz said.

The man who grabbed her is described as a 5-foot 8-inch light-skinned black man in his early 20s. He had a muscular build and a full beard. Both of his ears were pierced and he was wearing black and gray earrings. He had tattoos on the inside of his forearms and was wearing a solid black T-shirt, black cargo shorts, black socks and Nike sandals.

The girl said the man who remained seated on the porch did not speak and never took part in the attack. He may be considered a witness, Puetz said.

The man was black and in his early 20s with a dark complexion and a very thin build. He was 5 feet 8 inches tall and was unshaven with small "twisty" braids in his hair. He was wearing a black T-shirt with the Nike logo "Just Do It" written on the front and black gym shorts with blue stripes down the sides.

Officers were also unable to locate the Good Samaritan.

Anyone with information should call 727-893-7780, text 727-420-8911 or leave a confidential tip at 727-892-5000.

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