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Report of child abduction near Sharpe’s Hill ends with child safe, one arrested

Sharpe's Hill, SC (Paul Kirby) - A report of a child abduction sent law enforcement officers screaming toward Swansea and later back toward Red Bank and the Three Fountains areas as they quickly searched for a missing three-year-old Wednesday afternoon. According to the sheriff's department, the child was taken when a car she was in was stolen from The Store. The Store is a package shop and convenience store that has also stocked hardware and served food. It is at Mimosa Drive and SC. Hwy 6 in the Sharpe’s Hill community of Lexington County.

The child was in the vehicle while her mother went inside to pay for gasoline. According to a spokesperson for the Lexington County Sheriff's Department, Roberto Lee Herrera, 39, has now been placed under arrest for stealing the car with the child inside.

The Ledger began to receive calls regarding this about 1:00 p.m. on July 24th. Multiple callers reporting seeing the increased law enforcement activity. About 20-minutes after the abduction, the car was stopped at Ramblin and Platt Springs Roads just outside South Congaree. A spokesperson for the Lexington County Sheriff’s Department said the child had been recovered safely and deputies had detained a person of interest.

Eyewitnesses later reported they drove up on the scene of the stop by happenstance. They discovered a surreal scene where a law enforcement officer was fighting with someone thought to be the suspect. They said that several citizens intervened and assisted that officer until additional deputies arrived to detain Herrera. He was subsequently placed under arrest and booked into the Lexington County Detention Center.

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