CARBONDALE, Ill. (KFVS) - A man is in custody in connection to a report of an attempted child abduction at the mall.
Argenis Hernandez, 23, of Chicago, was arrested for stalking and disorderly conduct.
At around 3:53 p.m. on Sunday, September 8, police responded to the Macy’s department store at the University Mall on East Main Street for a report of a possible attempted child abduction.
Police say the suspect followed the victims and an infant inside the business and tried to photograph or record them with a cell phone.
“When the officers arrived they found University Mall employees had chase the subject, and our officers were able to intercept pretty quickly and take the subject into custody," Carbondale Deputy Chief Stan Reno said.
One grandmother said she came in contact with the suspect just minutes earlier at the Ross shopping store. She wanted to be identified only as Brandi.
“I think this man is stalking us, he’s very weird."
On Sunday afternoon, Brandi was shopping in Ross with her daughter and grandchildren.
“I got my grand kids, I put them in my shopping cart and as we were walking away from that area, he literally walked beside me and actually brushed up against me and I said, ‘Do you think we are stealing because you are way to close,’" she said.
After seeing a Facebook post about the alleged attempted kidnapping, Brandi said she’s certain Hernandez is the same man she saw.
“It was the same description as what I saw, the same build, so I knew it was him,” she said.
The suspect was identified as Hernandez.
He was arrested and taken to the Jackson County Jail.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Carbondale Police Department at 618-457-3200.