Police on the lookout for man who grabbed 16-year-old girl

SEATTLE -- Police are again on the lookout for a possible attempted child abductor in West Seattle after a 16-year-old girl reported being grabbed by a man who jumped out of the bushes.

The girl was walking near West Seattle High School around 1:10 p.m. Tuesday in the 3000 block of California Avenue SW a man jumped out of the bushes and grabbed her, police said.

The girl was she was able to break free and took off running. She ran to the West Seattle High School where she reported the incident to the staff.

The victim was not injured, and police called to the scene could not locate the suspect.

West Seattle High students have heard about children targeted by adult predators in West Seattle neighborhoods in the past few months - now it's happened near their school and they are concerned.

"If they have a weapon, how much can I do?" one student asked.

The man is described as a white male in his 30s to 40s, 5'11" with a medium build and shoulder length brown hair. He was wearing a blue zip-up jacket and black jeans when he attempted to grab the girl, police said.

Anyone with information on the suspect is encouraged to call 911.

The incident follows a string of attempted abductions and child lurings occurring over the past six months in West Seattle. It is unknown if any of the incidents are connected, police said.

West Seattle High School Principal Ruth Medsker sent this letter home to families Tuesday night after the incident:

West Seattle Families,

Today, one of our students was off campus during lunch when she was grabbed by a male stranger. She was able to break away and ran back to school, where she immediately reported it to our school administration.  We called 9-1-1 and the police responded quickly. 

Please be assured that we are committed to keeping our students safe while they are at school.  We will continue to remind students to report these types of incidents to us immediately, and we also encourage you to discuss personal safety with your student. 

Thank you for all you do in support of our students.


Ruth Medsker