Possible near-abduction worries local mom

A disturbing incident involving her teen daughter and a friend is prompting an Ahwatukee mom to warn parents to teach their kids to be careful when they’re out in the neighborhood.

Just after midnight on June 8, her 19-year-old daughter and a friend were the last to leave a friendly gathering in the park near Desert Vista High School.

“Because it was dark and the lights were off, none of them had noticed a black van,” explained the mom, whose name is being withheld by AFN. “The girls noticed it when they went to leave because all of a sudden it cut them off from the exit they were using and blocked their ability to leave.”

The girls reacted quickly, threw the vehicle into reverse and headed out the other exit – “but barely made it out,” she said.

“The van continued to chase after them. They couldn’t see who was inside since the van’s windows were very darkly tinted but saw movement. The van continued to chase after them.”

The pair called 911 and the dispatcher directed them to a well-lit supermarket parking lot but “the van continued to chase after them” as they headed toward it.

“They ended up having to run a red light but the van continued to follow,” the mom said. “As they neared the grocery store parking lot, the van gave up.”

The police met them at the lot to make sure everyone got to their homes safely, but have no way of pursuing an investigation.

“Unfortunately, there wasn’t much they could tell the police,” the mom said, since they were never behind the van to see a license plate number and the window tint was so dark.

“They were incredibly lucky,” the grateful mother said. “It is extremely likely that the people in the van were looking to abduct them. I may never have seen my daughter again if they hadn’t acted quickly but it definitely has affected her mental health... she’s bipolar.”

The lesson to be learned from all this, she added: “We get very complacent when we live in a low-crime area and we let down our guard. It’s highly likely that’s why the van was there.

“Please be careful,” she asked parents, and “warn your teens. Teen abductions happen more often than you realize in Arizona.”

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