Local News

Man charged in abduction of 14-year-old girl in Garner

Posted August 16, 2012 10:43 p.m. EDT
Updated August 17, 2012 2:24 p.m. EDT

— A man accused of luring a 14-year-old girl into his ice cream truck and abducting her was charged early Friday with first-degree kidnapping.

Garner police led the handcuffed suspect, Omar Kareem Sellers, 39, out of the station about 7 a.m. after detaining him overnight. Sellers also was charged with statutory rape, statutory sex offense and indecent liberties with a minor.

The incident began early Thursday evening at Avery Square Apartments, where the teen was spending time with other neighborhood kids.

Those children told their parents that a man in an ice cream truck offered to pay the girl to help sell ice cream. At some point, the girl got in the van with the man and left.

Alarmed when she did not return, the girl's relatives heard the accounts from witnesses and called authorities.

Garner police said that she was reported missing around 9 p.m., and witnesses told them that she was possibly kidnapped by someone in a white, conversion-van ice cream truck with colorful polka dots and the Bratz logo. An Amber Alert for her was issued at 10:23 p.m.

A Raleigh police officer stopped a vehicle matching the description on Creech Road and found the girl, Garner police said. She was reunited with her parents, and the alert was canceled around 11 p.m.

The Amber Alert included the teen's name. However, WRAL removed her name after authorities said she had been sexually assaulted.

Police said the girl may have consented to having sex with the man, but under the law a 14-year-old cannot consent.

"Thank God she's safe," relative Tery Davis said. "For anybody else that have kids, keep your eyes on them because right now, times (are) hard. You've got to keep your eyes on every child."

After Sellers was charged and transported from the station in a police cruiser, officers began processing the ice cream van.