8-year-old child returns home after harrowing kidnapping

Saul Bowman
May 22, 2019

Calzada said Sabatka's mother tried to rescue her daughter from the abductor, but was thrown from the vehicle.

Eight-year-old Salem Sabatka was found safe around 2:00 am local time Sunday, and the 51-year-old man accused of abducting her was taken into custody, Fort Worth Police Department spokesperson Buddy Calzada told reporters.

At the end of the walk Sunday, Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price and Police Chief Joel Fitzgerald addressed neighbors.

Surveillance video from a nearby house shows her mother tumbling to the ground after trying to pull her daughter free from the vehicle.

An AMBER Alert was issued on Saturday for a missing 8-year-old girl out of Texas.

The suspect, Michael Webb, now faces charges of aggravated kidnapping, a first-degree felony.

Salem was taken to a local hospital to be examined by doctors, but police said she appeared physically unharmed.


Last year, Webb was facing charges of sexual and aggravated assault in Texas but the case was dismissed when prosecutors said the alleged victim became uncooperative.

Police say the young girl was walking with her mother when a the man pulled up, snatching her off the street and into his vehicle.

"An Amber Alert was issued for Salem, who is 4'5", shortly after her abduction, describing the suspect as a 'light skinned black male of skinny build' and the vehicle as a dark gray four-door sedan with alloy wheels.

"They're our heroes tonight, I'll tell you that".

"We have called in some additional resources", Calzada said at a press conference Saturday evening. "We had citizens that went out of their way and helped not just the police department, but a family put some great closure to what we had going on right now". She was found about seven hours later in the early morning on Sunday at a hotel miles away, police said.

Officers arrived at the scene and located the room where the suspect was staying, where they discovered Salem. Webb was described as a bald black male who is 51 years old.

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