Man arrested in attempted kidnapping of Queens 5-year-old: police

Crime Tracker

Photo: NYPD

RICHMOND HILLS, Queens — A 24-year-old man has been arrested in an attempted kidnapping where he is accused of snatching a 5-year-old boy off a Queens street Thursday night in an incident caught on video, officials said.

James McGonagle, 24, was arrested Friday in connection with the incident. He’s been charged with attempted kidnapping and child endangerment.

According to the NYPD, it happened around 8 p.m. in Richmond Hill, near the corner of Hillside and Myrtle avenues.

Surveillance footage shows one man hop out of a maroon car, grab the child and quickly put the boy in the back seat of the vehicle. All the while, a second man sat in the front passenger seat of the car.

When the unidentified man got back in the driver’s seat, the boy’s mother, 45, rushed to the passenger side of the car and was able to pull her son to safety through the front passenger window, authorities said.

Diaz, son Jacob and her two other childrencan be seen in the video bravely rushing to the car to help save the boy.

The boy’s mother saw what was happening and immediately reached through the car’s open front window and pulled her son out of the car all the while she was screaming for her kids. Diaz was taking her three children to visit their father at work when the incident happened. 

The doors were locked on the suspect’s car but Diaz saw the open front passenger window as her opportunity.

“When my kid stood up in the window, I take him out.” Diaz said.

The entire time, the mother was screaming for help but as far as the man who grabbed her son, she has little clarity.

“They said nothing, they just took my kid,” Diaz said.

Diaz has three children. All of them are okay and just a bit shaken up, she said.

McGonagle and the other man quickly sped off, heading southbound on Hillside Avenue and then westbound on Jamaica Avenue, according to the NYPD.

At least one other man remains at large in connection with the attempted kidnapping. The second man was described as between 50 and 60 years old with eyeglasses. He was last seen wearing an orange shirt, blue jeans, and black shoes.

Submit tips to police by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), visiting crimestoppers.nypdonline.org, downloading the NYPD Crime Stoppers mobile app, or texting 274637 (CRIMES) then entering TIP577. Spanish-speaking callers are asked to dial 1-888-57-PISTA (74782).

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