A 13-year-old girl kidnapped in Texas was rescued three days later in Long Beach, California when a passerby saw her hold up a “help me” sign in a parked car.
According to an FBI affidavit, the girl left home on July 6 without her parent’s knowledge in an attempt to go to Australia to visit a school friend who moved away a year earlier.
As the girl was walking down a street in San Antonio, Texas when Sablan drove up, pulled a black handgun, and said, “If you don’t get in the car with me, I am going to hurt you.”
After getting into Sablan’s car, the girl told him about her friend.
He told the girl he could take her on a cruise ship to Australia to see her friend, but she would have to do something for him.
Steven Robert Sablan stopped the car and sexually assaulted the girl.
The girl’s mother reported her missing to San Antonio authorities on July 7.
Sablan sexually assaulted the girl several more times on the drive from San Antonio through New Mexico and Arizona and into California.
Good Samaritans Noticed The ‘Help Me’ Sign
The rescue occurred on July 9 in Long Beach, California.
Sablan parked at a laundromat and told the girl to change her clothes.
He then, took their clothes inside to wash them, creating an opportunity for the girl to write “help me” on a piece of paper.
Good samaritans saw the girl in the car holding up the sign and they called the police.
Police said in a press release:
Through their investigation, officers learned the Good Samaritans were in a parking lot when they saw the victim in a parked vehicle holding up a piece of paper with ‘help me’ written on it.
They acknowledged the note and immediately called 9-1-1.
Police responded to the call and upon their arrival, officers found Sablan standing outside of the car.
They observed the “visibly emotional and distressed girl” mouth the word “help” and they sprung into action.
Steven Robert Sablan Arrested
During the arrest, officers found a pair of silver handcuffs in Sablan’s back pocket.
They found a plastic BB gun, the “help me” sign, a switchblade knife, and black handcuffs in packaging labeled “Fetish Fantasy Series Designer Cuffs.”
On Thursday, Sablan was indicted by a federal grand jury on charges of kidnapping and transportation of a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity.
Sablan was being held a the federal Metropolitan Detention Center in downtown Los Angeles.
The girl was placed in the custody of the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services.
Watch the AP News report below.
Thank God for the good samaritans who took notice of the girl and took action.
Source: ABC News