Police: Man attempted to kidnap girl on her way to school

A suspicious man accused of trying to kidnap a young girl. Police need your help finding him. The attempted kidnapping happened near a bus stop in Maricopa Friday moring.

The father of this middle school student didn't want to go on camera but wants parents to be aware. The suspect is still on the loose and what this young girl did saved her from being kidnapped.

"Nobody's really afraid to walk to the bus stop, so it's pretty surprising to me as an older sister," said Alyssa Lebron.

Lebron waits to pick up her younger siblings as dozens of students get off the bus each day. This Maricopa neighborhood isn't in fear but is wathcing out for each other.

"As far as my daughter [goes], she rides the bus inter-diistrict and we wait with her at the bus stop until the bus picks her up," said Laura Studebaker. "So we kind of keep an eye out for the other kids also."

Studebaker's daughter is in sixth grade. After reports of an attempted kidnapping Friday morning near the Thornberry bus stop in the Homestead subdivision, Studebaker says her husband is already having a talk with their child.

Maricopa police say the suspect is described as a man with dark skin in his 30s or 40s. He was wearing a green shirt with white stripes and he was driving a car similar to a tan four-door Honda Accord. The father of a Desert Winds Middle School student says the man told his daguther her mom had been in a car accident and she needed to come with him. But the girl said no and asked for a code word before the suspect drove off.

"You know, there's always going to be an opportunity for creeps to kind of come around and look for kids who are vulnerable," Studebaker said. "I think that in any neighborhood it can happen."

The Maricopa Unified School District sent this email to parents. It reads in part: 

“In the Maricopa Unified School District, student safety is our top priority. Although we review safety precautions with students, it is imperative the school and parents team together. Whether students are walking to and from school, or even playing in the neighborhood, certain precautions should always be taken to ensure the safety of your child(ren).”

If you have any information, call Maricopa Police.