MIAMI – A man in Florida is facing serious charges after an alarming video captured him trying to snatch a child inside a busy Miami Beach pharmacy Thursday, and the child’s father fighting off the would-be kidnapper, according to reports.
The suspect was identified as 26-year-old Nicolas Sternaman, authorities said. He walked into the CVS on Collins Avenue around 11:55 a.m., just as the 4-year-old boy and his parents were exiting the business. Miami Beach police said he attempted to kidnap the child right in front of the boy’s parents, who managed to fight off the unsuccessful abductor, CBS News Miami reported.
Surveillance cameras from CVS caught the father quickly interceding and jumping on the man as he made an effort to snatch the boy with the parents nearby.
“Everyone was just shocked because it was so quick and it was so fast. The guy just came out of nowhere,” said witness Zachary Jefferson.
“I’m like screaming at the guy like stop, stop. Then I see her purse fall and I know she has important things in her purse. So I grabbed it and gave it to her. And I’m like somebody call the cops! Like please.”
Following the tussle, Sternaman, a Miami Beach resident, ran from the store but was chased by the boy’s father and another shopper, the New York Post reported.
Sternaman was charged with multiple crimes related to the alarming crime on Thursday. (Miami-Dade Corrections)
The father was able to flag down an officer as he was chasing Sternaman, and the perpetrator was taken into custody about three blocks from the store along Harding Avenue near 71st Street, according to Local 10 News.
According to authorities, the suspect invoked his rights and refused to answer any questions about the offense.
The child was visibly shaken, police noted in the arrest report, and fearfully held his mother’s grasp following the frightening encounter.
Sternaman was transported and booked at the Turner Guilford Knight (TGK) Correctional Facility, CBS Miami reported. He faces charges of kidnapping a child under 13, aggravated child abuse, as well as assault and battery.
According to its website, TGK “has intake, release, cells for people with serious mental illness, a medical ward, women’s cells, and property retrieval.”