Crime

Man arrested after trying to kidnap toddler from shopping cart, Santa Barbara sheriff says

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A 56-year-old man is accused of kidnapping and child endangerment after allegedly attempting to kidnap a toddler from a Buellton grocery store earlier this month, according to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office.

On Aug. 7, William “Bill” Henderson allegedly removed the 2-year-old child from a shopping cart at the Albertsons supermarket on Highway 246, and started walking toward the exit, said Lt. Erik Raney.

“The parent of the 2-year-old child stopped the suspect, and the suspect released the child before leaving the store,” Raney said. “The 2-year-old child and parent were clearly distraught over the incident.”

On Tuesday, deputies arrested Henderson, whom they described as the owner of a local transportation business.

He was booked into Santa Barbara County Jail on suspicion of felony kidnapping and misdemeanor child endangerment, Raney said.

Henderson remained in custody Wednesday afternoon, with bail set at $100,000.

“Deputies are looking for additional witnesses to the incident on Aug. 7, and they are concerned there might be other incidents involving Henderson that have not been reported to law enforcement,” Raney said.

Anyone who may have witnessed the incident on Aug. 7, or has information related to the investigation is asked to call the Buellton Sheriff’s Station at 805-686-8150. To leave an anonymous tip, call 805-681-4171 or go to the sheriff’s website at www.sbsheriff.org/home/anonymous-tip.

Noozhawk executive editor Tom Bolton can be reached at tbolton@noozhawk.com. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.
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