A 12-year-old boy threw himself to safety from a moving car after being kidnapped by a man who lured him into his vehicle and demanded drugs, police say.
The child accepted a ride home from school by Timothy Miller, according to Stephanie Slater, a spokeswoman for the Boynton Beach police department in Florida.
The boy told investigators he was walking home from a school bus stop when Mr Miller offered him a ride. He said the suspect then asked him for drugs and looked at him strangely.
The boy opened the door and leapt out after Mr Miller began driving erratically, police said.
Witnesses who saw the child jump proceeded to follow the vehicle, eventually managing to block it and detain the 26-year-old until police arrived.
Mr Miller has been charged with kidnapping, child neglect and resisting arrest.
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He said the child asked to exit the vehicle at one point, according to police.
The boy told police Mr Miller seemed “nice and had a friendly smile,” according to an affidavit.
"We are grateful to the good Samaritans who assisted us with taking Miller into custody," said a message on the police department's Facebook page. "We encourage parents to use this as an opportunity to remind their children about the dangers of getting into a car with someone they do not know."
The police spokeswoman also encouraged parents not to feature their children’s names on their backpacks in visible locations, telling NBC: “If a stranger calls out their name, perhaps they would be more willing to get into a car with them."
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Additional reporting by AP