ITHACA, N.Y. (WETM) – Elmira Police have arrested a suspect in connection to the alleged abduction attempt of a 14-year-old girl in Elmira on Tuesday.
Ryan Benjamin of Owego has been charged with Attempted Kidnapping in the Second Degree, a class C felony. He was arraigned in Elmira City Court at around 6:45 pm and remanded to the Chemung County Jail on $100,000 cash / $200,000 property bond.
On February 5, at around 10:00 am, investigators in Ithaca located a vehicle parked behind a business on Elmira Road in Ithaca, N.Y. Benjamin was seen returning to the car, interviewed by investigators, and arrested around 3:10 p.m.
On Tuesday the victim told police that an adult male had been following her in a vehicle while she was walking on Mt. Zoar Street in the area of Fulton Street.
According to the victim, the vehicle eventually pulled over to the side of the street and the driver exited the vehicle.
As the victim walked on the south side of the street, the suspect followed her walking on the north side of the street. As the two approached the area of Rite Aid, the suspect crossed the street and followed directly behind the victim.
The suspect walked at a quicker pace and got directly behind the victim. The suspect then told the victim that she needed to go with him. The victim picked up her pace. The suspect then told her that he had a knife. The victim continued to walk. He then told her that if she ran, he would chase her, catch her and hurt her. The victim ignored the threats and continued to walk.
She quickly diverted into the Rite Aid parking lot and entered the store. The male remained at the edge of the parking lot for a few moments watching her inside the store. The suspect eventually left the area, walking back in the direction of where he had parked the vehicle.
The Elmira Police Department appreciates the assistance provided by the various agencies and is especially grateful to those who provided valuable information leading to the suspect’s capture.Elmira Police