A toddler was snatched from a play park in Berlin, Germany by a man who was reportedly drunk at the time of the incident. Quick-thinking bystanders prevented the man from abducting the child. The police were alerted of the incident and the man was arrested. However, he was eventually released by the police without any charges.
A woman who was at the park with her child noticed a man walking away with a small girl. Suspicious of the man's behaviour, the woman named Heike S, whose real name has been concealed upon her request, followed the stranger. She had first noticed the man talking to the child at the entrance of the park. When the man noticed Heike, he grabbed the child's arm and started running away.
Despite having her two-year-old daughter with her, the worried parent chased the man. When she could no longer keep up with the suspected child snatcher, she started shouting for help. Alarmed by the woman's cries for help, a kiosk owner, Zoran Z chased down the 44-year-old man.
Zoran confronted the man and asked him if the child was his daughter. The man eventually responded that the child was not his. Zoran convinced the man to take the child back to the park. Accompanied by the 44-year-old kiosk owner, the strange man went back to the park where the girl's family was frantically looking for her.
The unnamed suspect kept saying that children were important for the future and parents were negligent with their children. The man put the girl on his shoulders and asked her to look for her family. The two-year-old was reunited with her mother.
The police arrived on the scene and arrested the man. According to the Daily Mail, the man refused to do a breath test but a blood test proved that he was drunk at the time. The man has some mental health issues and is known to the police. However, he is not a known sex offender or paedophile. The police later released him stating that conditions for an arrest warrant were not met.
A specialist child crimes unit is investigating the incident. A psychiatric unit is also investigating the man to decide if he needs to be put in a secure unit.
Even though a warning has been placed at the park, Heike is worried about running into the man again.