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Police Arrest Suspect in Attempted Kidnapping of 5-Year-Old Boy in Richmond Hill

July 19, 2021 By Allie Griffin

Police have nabbed a man who attempted to kidnap a 5-year-old boy off a street in Richmond Hill last week.

Police arrested 24-year-old James McGonagle of Pomonok a day after he brazenly grabbed the boy and threw him into his car. The NYPD released a video of the incident Friday morning that went viral.

McGonagle was seen on video getting out of a sedan and swooping up the 5-year-old who was walking just a few steps ahead of his mother and siblings down Hillside Avenue on Thursday at 8 p.m.

He put the boy into the back of his parked car, got behind the wheel and locked the doors. However, the child’s quick-acting mother chased after McGonagle and wrestled her son out the open passenger side window.

Witnesses then surrounded the car before it took off and turned down Jamaica Avenue, according to video footage and police.

McGonagle was arrested Friday on charges of attempted kidnapping, reckless endangerment and acting in a manner injurious to a child. He also allegedly punched an officer and went to the hospital for a psychiatric evaluation, several news publications reported.

Police are still looking for a second suspect — believed to be McGonagle’s father — who was sitting in the passenger seat when his son attempted to abduct the child. He is described as a light-skinned male, 50 to 60 years old with eyeglasses and was last seen wearing an orange shirt, jeans and black shoes, police said.

The boy’s 45-year-old mother said she didn’t know either man. The boy was not injured during the incident.

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