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Police Release Chilling Footage of Moment They Busted into Hotel Room To Rescue Kidnapped Age 8 Girl

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A walk through a residential neighborhood should be pretty safe and straightforward. Plenty of people go on walks with their dogs, children and friends without batting an eye.

But in May, one neighborhood in Fort Worth, Texas, experienced quite the scare. A mother — who wishes to remain unnamed — was walking with her 8-year-old daughter, Salem Sabatka, when the two were approached and a man grabbed Salem.

He forced the girl into his car while fighting off her mother. Thankfully, a neighbor’s doorbell camera caught the car and part of the attack.



An Amber Alert was issued and the hunt was on for the young girl. The Fort Worth Police Department posted a photo of the 8-year-old on Facebook along with a short description, hoping that someone would spot her and call in.

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They also released a description of the suspect, saying he was an “unknown black male with a bald head, no facial hair [and] skinny build wearing a navy jacket and a gray shirt,” according to WFAA.



Photos of the suspect’s car were also distributed and neighbors, friends and volunteers turned out in droves, keeping their eyes open for any sign of the kidnapper or Salem.

Later that day, a tip came in regarding Forest Hill’s WoodSpring Suites hotel, and Forest Hill police showed up to the room of 51-year-old Michael Webb. Seeing no sign of the girl, they left — but Webb had forced Salem to hide in a laundry basket and threatened to harm her and her family if she made any sounds, according to a video by Inside Edition.

Thankfully, another tip came in when a friend of the family spotted the wanted vehicle in the parking lot of the same hotel, and this time Fort Worth police showed up, broke down the door, hauled out a naked Webb and discovered Salem’s hiding place.

Video of the rescue was recently released, and the chilling footage has been circulating.

In September, Webb was convicted of kidnapping and sentenced to life in prison, according to Inside Edition.



“We believe that justice has been served in this case. And we are thankful for and agree with the Judge’s decision to sentence him to life in prison. My hope is that this family and this community will find solace in knowing that he will never be able to harm another little child again,” U.S. Attorney Nealy Cox said, according to CBS News.

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If it hadn’t been for the neighbor’s doorbell camera and a family friend’s diligence, this story could have ended very differently. The Fort Worth Police Department made sure to recognize all the offers of help that came through on May 18.



“Thank You to everyone who offered their time to volunteer in the search for Salem Sabatka,” the department wrote in a Facebook post on May 20. “Thank you for all of the messages and tips provided by our followers.

“We also want to thank the numerous police departments that assisted us in the search. Fort Worth’s community is the best.”

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Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she's strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.
As of January 2019, Amanda has written over 1,000 stories for The Western Journal but doesn't really know how. Graduating from California State Polytechnic University with a MA in Rhetoric/Composition and TESOL, she wrote her thesis about metacognitive development and the skill transfer between reading and writing in freshman students.
She has a slew of interests that keep her busy, including trying out new recipes, enjoying nature, discussing ridiculous topics, reading, drawing, people watching, developing curriculum, and writing bios. Sometimes she has red hair, sometimes she has brown hair, sometimes she's had teal hair.
With a book on productive communication strategies in the works, Amanda is also writing and illustrating some children's books with her husband, Edward.
Location
Austin, Texas
Languages Spoken
English und ein bißchen Deutsch
Topics of Expertise
Faith, Animals, Cooking




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