Dog foils attempted kidnap of two-year-old girl on The Mount at Poulner, Ringwood
WOULD-be kidnappers snatched a two-year-old girl at Ringwood but were foiled when her mother’s dog bit one of them.
Detectives have launched an investigation into the incident, which took place on The Mount at Poulner between 10.40am and 10.50am on Wednesday, appealing for witnesses and video footage.
The mother and daughter were approached by two men who showed an interest in the pet before one of them picked up the child and ran with her towards a nearby housing estate.
However, the mother’s dog gave chase and bit the offender’s leg, forcing him to let go of the youngster.
Specialist officers were supporting both the mother and daughter as enquiries continued into what is being treated as an attempted kidnapping.
Police patrols in the area were stepped up in a bid to identify those responsible.
The two men were described as white, in their late 30s, both about 5ft 7ins tall and wearing caps. One was wearing light blue jeans and the other dark jeans.
DI Janine Bradley said: “We fully appreciate that this incident will have a significant impact on the community, and we want to reassure the public that we are taking this report very seriously.
“Our officers are carrying out extensive enquiries in the local area – including house-to-house visits, scoping CCTV and there will be high-visibility patrols in the area to reassure the community.
“If you see our officers and have information pertaining to this incident, then please do speak with them.”
She continued: “This occurred in a residential area, during broad daylight, and we would implore anyone who may have seen or heard what happened to come forward.
“Perhaps you are aware of someone who has today suffered a dog bite to their leg?
“Any information, no matter how small or insignificant you believe it to be, could really help aid our ongoing investigation and identify those responsible.”
Nearby residents were also asked to review any CCTV or doorbell camera footage in case this captured significant moments before, during or after the incident.
The shocked mum posted on Facebook: “The police are doing all they can to catch the bastards.
“But please keep your eyes peeled for suspicious activity and people.”
She said she felt "numb" but that her daughter was unfazed.
“Never thought something like that would happen to me.”
Those with information should contact Hampshire officers on 101, quoting crime reference number 44220185316, or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.