'Tis the Season: Dancing Transient Who Hugged Little Girl After She Showed Him Affection Roughed Up by Girl's Irate Grandfather

A Phoenix transient made news Sunday by reportedly attempting to abduct a 3-year-old girl from a Phoenix park, which prompted the girl's family to rough him up while waiting for police.

Turns out, he never tried to abduct the girl, he just gave her a hug, which she initiated, before he was assaulted by the girl's grandfather.

The way much of the media described the (ahem) heroic tale yesterday is as follows:


Phoenix police were called to an apartment complex in the neighborhood of 2500 West Camelback Sunday afternoon. Witnesses told police the transient had tried to abduct the 3-year-old -- who was playing in a park with her aunt -- because they saw him dancing in a nearby parking lot before approaching the girl.

The girl's aunt watched the girl start to walk away with the transient. She yelled for the girl to stop as the transient continued on his way.

The aunt, apparently, perceived this as a possible abduction and called police -- but not before telling the rest of the family to gather their torches and pitchforks.

Not happy, the girl's family spent the next half-hour looking for the transient while waiting for police. They found him, and when they did, they roughed him up well enough to cause what police describe as minor injuries.

The narrative written by much of the media was that the hero family tracked down a would-be child abductor terrorizing the streets of Phoenix.

That, as the Phoenix Police Department clarified yesterday, was not the case.

Turns out, the transient was dancing in a parking lot adjacent to the playground where the girl was playing with her aunt, which is weird, but not illegal.

The man wandered toward the park and, when he approached the girl,
"The child reached up to the transient as though saying hello or wanting a hug (showing affection). The transient male gave the three year old a hug and began walking away. The child followed for a couple of steps until the aunt stopped her. The transient left the area," Phoenix police say.

Police say, he will not be charged with a crime -- but what about the hotheads who roughed him up? Police say the homeless man didn't want charges pressed.

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Do you have children, Mr. James King?


Yet another good reason to have nothing to do with any child not your own. If they're hurt, let them lie there and call for help lest you be accused of "inappropriate touching."


This guy's lucky he didn't have this happen in Utah...Jackasses stormed this guy's house and beat him and his partner within an inch of their lives because they thought he had kidnapped their kids... After a year, the Prosecutors finally figured out that the 6 or 8 people who broke into his house were the guilty ones...http://www.abc4.com/content/ne...


Sad, but true with the injustice system of Arizona


Yeah, I was kinda spooked about 2 years ago. I was at the library with my kids, and this little boy could not reach the drinking fountain. I helped him up, but I caught his mother's eye first, so she saw that I wasn't just randomly grabbing kids(Her hands were completely full), and I held him as far away as physically possible while still trying to help this poor boy... Can't even be a good citizen anymore thanks to a combination of whack jobs on both sides of this particular equation.


I learned a lesson a few years back at my eldest son's house. When I hugged my 4 year old grandson, he turned to his parent's and said, "Did you see what he did to me?" That was the very last time I will ever do that sort of thing.

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