Jacksonville parents cautious after kidnapping attempt

Fort Caroline Middle School student grabbed by man in car Friday

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Many Arlington parents either drove their children to school Monday morning or made other arrangements to keep their children safe as police continue to search for a man who tried to abduct an 11-year-old boy Friday morning.

"It's not safe for them to be outside by themselves, so I always walk them every day to school," said Vladimir Henderson.

Police said the boy was walking to Fort Caroline Middle School along University Club Boulevard between 8:40 a.m. and 8:45 a.m. when a man pulled up in black, newer-model Toyota four-door car with dark tinted windows and tried to grab him.

Investigators said the boy fought the man off and ran away, and the man then sped off.

There were no witnesses, police said, adding that the boy was credible. The boy was not hurt.

The attempted kidnapper is described as a white man in his 30s with wavy, sandy blond hair. The man had a tattoo on the back of his left hand of a heart with a ribbon through it and three letters on the ribbon.

Police released sketches both of the man's face and of the tattoo.

On Monday, Fort Caroline Middle Principal Jennifer Bridwell sent a letter home to parents reminding them to review stranger-danger tips with their children. [Read letter]

Linda Young said the tips are something she has already hammered home to her four young grandchildren who live near the school.

"They all hold hands. No one goes anywhere without the other one," Young said. "They are all together. And if someone comes up to you, run screaming."

Anyone with information on the man's identity or the attempted kidnapping is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 866-845-TIPS.

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