A woman putting groceries into her car Monday evening at the Mission Hy-Vee store on Martway was confronted by a man who tried to force her into her car in an apparent attempted abduction. A suspect was apprehended by police about 45 minutes after the attack.
The woman was able to fight off the attacker, but she suffered cuts from a weapon he was holding. Police believe it was a knife. The 24-year-old victim was taken to a hospital for treatment of the lacerations to her hands. Mission police said the victim did the right thing in fighting back because she believed he was attempting an abduction. “If that’s what she thought was happening, then she did the right thing,” Capt. Dan Madden of the Mission police said.
The 33-year-old suspect, described as a white male, was found on the roof of a building to the north across Martway in the Mission West shopping center. The victim was able to provide police with a description of the suspect and the direction in which he ran after the attack. Capt. Madden said he fled after probably realizing he had picked the wrong victim.
Several police agencies assisted Mission police in setting a wide perimeter that ran over to at least Johnson Drive. A K-9 unit from Olathe Police Department tracked the suspect into the parking lot at Mission West, which has the old Hobby Lobby building on the west side and businesses such as the Mission Drivers License Bureau, Avelluto’s and Salsa Grill on the east side.
The dog was able to follow a scent into a service alley behind the east side buildings and was circling that area, Capt. Madden said. Officers saw a way to get onto the roof of the buildings and were headed up onto the roof when the suspect was seen coming off the roof by officers on the ground. Madden said at that point the suspect was “introduced” to the K-9 unit. The man did not suffer any bites and did not offer any resistance to arrest when confronted.
The suspect is being held for aggravated battery and attempted aggravated robbery, Madden said. Police and prosecutors are still looking at attempted abduction charges.
Police were called to the scene at 7:24 p.m. Officers from Westwood, Olathe, Fairway, Roeland Park and Merriam assisted Mission police in the search.
Mission police had just last week conducted a self-defense class for the community.