An attempted child kidnapping in Woodstock was thwarted by the “heroic actions” of three men who stopped the alleged perpetrator in his tracks, police said.
The men rescued a 4-year-old boy who was snatched from his bicycle at around 12:43 p.m. Aug. 11 by an alleged kidnapper near Olson Play Park, according to a press release from the Woodstock Police Department.
Kevin A. Sorensen, 39, of the 200 block of Meadow Lane in Woodstock, is accused of attempting to run off with the boy, before help stepped in.
Screams from the boy, his sibling and friends alerted Sean Norton and Jonathon Hunt, handymen who happened to be driving home from a job in the area. As they passed the intersection of Clay and Bagley streets, the shouting got their attention, they said.
The men pulled over their vehicle and ran to the scene. Police said Sorensen released the boy as the men approached and attempted to flee, but the pair restrained him until officers arrived.
A third man, Octavio Ramirez, who lives nearby, also ran to the scene. Norton and Ramirez restrained Sorensen while Hunt called 911.
Police initially said two people were involved in the rescue, but later revised that statement to include Ramirez.
“If the child’s friends had not screamed for help, and [the men] had not intervened, I am confident that the child would have been physically injured,” Deputy Chief Jeffrey Parsons said.
Parsons said Sorensen was attempting to remove clothing from the child when the men came upon the scene.
Sorensen, a convicted child sex offender who is no longer required to register as such, was taken into custody without incident and transported to the Woodstock Police Department. He was charged with aggravated kidnapping, aggravated battery, aggravated criminal sexual abuse and unlawful restraint, according to police.
Sorensen’s home address is several blocks from where the incident occurred. He was no longer registered as a sex offender because he had fulfilled the state’s time requirement, according to Parsons.
When the incident occurred, the boy was being supervised by a sibling who is old enough to watch the child, Parsons said.
Police arrived on the scene after being called to the intersection of East Bagley and Clay streets, where the park is located, to respond to a fight in progress. When they arrived, police found the men restraining Sorenson.
“Because of the quick, heroic actions of the Good Samaritans and responding officers and detectives, the child was not physically injured,” the WPD said in the release.
Sorensen is being held at the McHenry County Correctional Facility on $50,000 bond. He is due in court Aug. 23. If convicted on the most serious charge of aggravated kidnapping, a Class X felony, he could face 30 years in jail.
Updated at 2:26 p.m. Aug. 15 to reflect a revision from the Woodstock Police Department regarding the number of people involved in stopping the alleged kidnapper, and to include their names.