Part of the reason it’s been so difficult to watch the internet go from full “thoughts and prayers” mode in regard to the mysterious disappearance of Carlee Russell only for them to turn on the 25-year-old, is that regardless of how Russell’s story shakes out, Black women and girls being abducted is a real problem in America that too often goes ignored.
So when they’re fortunate enough to be found alive we really should be collectively relieved and happy.
With that, I’m relieved and happy six-year-old Ah’Lyric is alive and well.
Ah’Lyric of Miami, Florida, recently told WSVN 7 about how she escaped a kidnapping attempt last Thursday by biting her would-be abductor on his arm.
“Many kids don’t know how to defend themselves, so I’m actually happy she was able to defend herself,” Ah’Lyric’s mother, Teshia McGill, told WSVN 7.
She said she had been playing with her siblings in the courtyard of their apartment complex when they noticed a white SUV parked outside. Ah’Lyric said her siblings had gone inside for water while she remained outside until a man “grabbed me, picked me up, and started running with me and I bit him and then he slapped me and threw me to the floor and started running to his car.”
According to the arrest affidavit obtained by NBC News Ah’Lric told police “she was suddenly grabbed by the arm … and pulled toward the rear of the stairs.”
“The victim began to fight back and pulled away from the defendant. The defendant then picked up the victim and began to carry her away,” the affidavit stated. “The victim bit the defendant on the arm causing him to drop her. The defendant slapped the victim and ran away towards the front of the apartment complex. The victim ran around the building towards the front to tell her aunt what had just occurred.”
The story was also confirmed by Miami Police Officer Kiara Delva, who described the suspected kidnapper as a “Hispanic male.”
“Fortunate enough, that 6-year-old brave little girl fought for her life she even bit the subject forcing him to drop her and let her go,” Delva told WSVN.
Miami-Dade jail records obtained by NBC 6 identified the suspect as 32-year-old Leonardo Venegas, who was arrested Saturday and charged with kidnapping and child abuse causing no great bodily harm. He reportedly tried to lie and say he was househunting in the area around the time of the abduction attempt, however, there were no “For Sale” signs in the apartment complex.
On Tuesday, Ah’Lyric was honored by The Miami Police Department for her bravery.
And for every Black woman or girl who survives their abduction attempt, where they survive by fleeing or fighting off their attacker, there are countless others who are not as fortunate. They deserve more than our collective thoughts and prayers, especially when they can dissipate into a sea of misogynoir at any moment, as in Carlee’s case.