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Calif. teacher's aide thwarts attempted kidnapping of girl

New York Daily News New York Daily News 19/10/2015 JASON SILVERSTEIN

This teacher’s aide deserves a raise.

An eagle-eyed elementary school aide in California thwarted an attempted kidnapping of one of her students Friday after spotting her in public and noticing something seemed sinisterly wrong.

“It was kind of like a superwoman power thing,” Sandra Ferguson, of Sutter Elementary School in Antioch, told KGO.

“It was like, wow, I can’t believe I did that!”

Sandra Ferguson of Sutter Elementary School Sandra Ferguson of Sutter Elementary School Ferguson said she noticed a young girl in the front seat of a car with a man that morning, and recognized her as an 11-year-old student from the school.

Sensing that something was wrong, Ferguson drove up to them and struck up a conversation.

“I said, ‘Sweetheart, is that your dad?’” Ferguson told KGO.

“She said, ‘No, he’s a friend.’ I said, ‘No, he’s not your friend!' ”

The teacher’s aide blocked the man’s car with her own, ordered the girl to get out, and called the cops, she said.

The so-called friend, 51-year-old Santiago Salazar, was arrested without incident and charged with suspicion of kidnapping, according to the Contra Costa Times.

Police said Salazer, who has no connection to the girl, lured her toward his car while she walked to school, then grabbed her by the wrist and yanked her inside.

In the end, the girl was not hurt, and the school principal praised the aide who unwittingly saved her, calling Ferguson “a guardian angel, preventing something terrible from happening.”

jsilverstein@nydailynews.com

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