Mom Saves 2 Girls From Abductor After They Mouthed: 'Please Help Me, This Is Not My Dad'

A Florida man has been charged with child abuse and false imprisonment after he allegedly followed two young girls on their walk home and tried to abduct them.
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As reported by NBC affiliate WFLA, two girls, both under the age of 12, were leaving Cherry's Bar and Grill restaurant in Brandon on Sunday evening when 37-year-old David Matthew Daniels allegedly began following them, telling the two that he would "supervise" their walk home.

"He did not know these children and these children definitely did not know him," Jessica Lang with the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office told the outlet.

According to police, Daniels struck the girls multiple times in the head and even placed one of them in a headlock.
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“At this point, he’s following them out of the restaurant and starts to hit one of the children over the head and continues to follow them,” Lang said.

The girls, who were on bikes, proceeded to head towards a nearby church.

"Thankfully these children stuck together and rode their bikes to a nearby church and asked an adult for help," Lang added.

Daniels allegedly followed the two friends inside the church and claimed they were his children. But one quick-thinking mother at the church knew something was amiss.

"I saw two children on their bicycles and a male adult behind them," the woman, who did not want to be identified, told Fox7. As she went over, she recalled one of the two girls discreetly mouthing to her: "Please help me, this is not my dad."

"He was kind of talking over her, right behind her, putting his arm around her neck and saying something in her ear, saying, 'We just moved here, we just want to see how we can help do whatever you're doing,'" she said.
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The mom thought it best not to react and played along as she welcomed the so-called father and daughter trio inside the church - until she was able to call 911.

"I engaged in conversation with him," she said. "I said, 'Oh that's nice, where did you move here from?' He said, 'Oh, I am not really sure.'"

When Hillsborough County deputies arrived near the scene, they located the suspect a short distance from the church as he walked back towards downtown.

He was arrested on two counts each of false imprisonment of a child and child abuse. He is being held on $104,000 bond.

The two girls told police they believed they were being abducted.

"I don't want any recognition for this," the heroic woman told Fox7 off-camera. "I don't want to be a hero. I just did what I hope anybody would do for my own kids."

"There are moms out there who are like me. They are going to recognize the signs, and they are going to know what to do," she added. "In that moment, I didn't know if I was going to have the right answer. But they are fine, and they are home today."

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