Do you ever get a heavy feeling in the pit of your stomach? One that tells you something is off? Do you trust your gut or brush it off as indigestion?
Thanks to a Kentucky man who went with his gut feeling, two young girls have been rescued from a horrific situation.
Mark Buede works as a delivery driver for Papa John’s Pizza in Lexington. His daughter Faith works there, too, but had just gotten off work when they happened to be making one particular delivery together in November 2018.
Faith had taken the call for the order to be delivered to a Catalina Motel room. Her dad went to the door to make a seemingly routine delivery when he saw something he didn’t expect behind the man who’d made the order.
“There was a little girl that didn’t have any clothes on,” Buede told Lexington Herald-Leader. She was reportedly on the man’s bed when the deliveryman saw her.
“I got back to the car, and I said, ‘That didn’t seem right.'”
Buede told his daughter what happened. They made the decision to call 911 and that’s when Lexington Police Department stepped in.
It could have been easy for Buede to simply think he was overreacting. Instead, he said something and that turned out to be exactly the right thing to do.
Brenna Angel, a spokesperson for the police department, told NBC News that following investigations it was reported that two underage girls younger than 12 were “nude” in that hotel room with their father, 36-year-old Justin Elam.
It was discovered that Elam was abusing the girls. Angel reportedly called the incident “unusual.” If it hadn’t been for Buede and his daughter doing the right thing, those girls might still be in that situation.
“I’ve got kids,” Buede told Lexington Herald-Leader. “I’m going to protect kids if I can.”
Now he has been recognized for his outstanding service to his community.
“Last night at the annual Police Awards Banquet, we honored exemplary acts and outstanding service by police department employees, public safety personnel, and members of our community,” Lexington Police Department shared on Facebook on June 19.
The post went on to mention Buede and his daughter. “Mr. Mark Buede and his daughter took the initiative to call 911 when they saw a suspicious situation involving children. The department is incredibly grateful and proud of the people who work every day to keep Lexington safe!”
Buede was awarded a public service medal at the banquet. The three officers who conducted the initial investigation — William Phillips, Corey Sutton and Zakary Ridener — were also honored.
As for Elam, he currently resides at Fayette County Detention Center where he awaits his next court date at the end of the month.
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