22 February, 2011

Possible Child Abduction Attempt at Brightwater Commons

Hi all,

Below is an email that found its way to me from Nikki of RAC.  Please read.



I was wondering if you could help. My husband and I suspect that our little girl (who is now 2 years and 10 months) was being watched for a possible abduction on Saturday afternoon (5th of Feb) at the Brightwater Commons.

I would like to give you all the details and then if possible if you could forward this to everyone in the RAC committees to get as many parents informed of how easily this could happen.


We were sitting in the promotional area at the Brightwater Commons where kiddies' scooters were available for hire within the small area under the roof. We were watching our daughter with the other kids racing around the area, which was that day enclosed with benches for parents to sit on. There were quite a few kids and parents within the area.

We did not notice the two Indian men sitting on the next bench to our left until we noticed our daughter keep looking at them as she made her way around the circle. We noticed one of the men waving and smiling at her. She was very aware of them and as they seem to make eye contact with her every time she came around. Both my husband and I became weary right away and started to watch the men quite closely.

My husband noticed that one of the men had taken out a small digital camera and had placed the camera low on his lap pointing the lens at my daughter and he seemed to follow her with the camera as she came past again. Both my husband and I stared at the two men quite obviously and he put the camera away.

A few minutes later (2-3 minute) an Indian couple (seemly unrelated to the two men) approached us and asked us about our daughter. Things like how old she was and said how cute she was. They proceeded to tell us the reason for all the questions was that they had an 18 month old daughter and were wondering if their daughter could use the scooters as well. A very strange question for a parent because all mothers and fathers know if their child was capable of any activity or not. That and they did not have a child with them.

What made it even more suspicious was where they stood in relation to trying to talk to us.

They had positioned themselves directly behind us, while we were sitting on the bench, forcing me to turn all the way around to look at them. There was ample space to stand next to the bench for a more polite conversation.

My husband just ignored them as he was very uneasy about everything and stood up to watch our daughter and the men in a more aggressive manner. As soon as he did the couple talking to me said thanks and walked away and the two men next to us got up and walked away.

We really do suspect that this was an attempt to distract us. There are many exits and the flea market stalls are not even 5 meters behind us where there was ample place to hide and change her to make her unrecognizable in a short space of time.


1) the one was between the ages of 35-40. He was slightly balding with shortly cut hair. Slightly over weight around the midriff. Deeply set eyes with an overhanging brow.
2) The second was no older than 35 and had a short back and side but a longer cut hair / long fringe. Quite a friendly face and thinner build to the other. The camera he carried was a small digital camera silver. Very similar looking to the Sony cyber shot.  http://www.techgadgets.in/digital-cameras/2007/29/sony-cyber-shot-s730-digital-camera-introduced-in-europe/


This has really shaken my husband and me up. If this was an attempt and we had not paid attention, the last few days may have turned out very different.

The thought of my daughter being abducted and ending up in some child pornography ring makes me sick to my stomach. And I just want to make as may people aware of the methods that these people may use to distract you or make your child "available" to them to take. We really did a false sense of security, not that we didn't watch our daughter at all times, but we did not even think to suspect anyone at that time.

Nikki Griffiths

Website: www.rac.org.za

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