Gwinnett County police are actively searching for a man who they believe followed a woman home from a Walmart and attempted to kidnap her.
Jamez Maclin, 23, is wanted on charges of felony kidnapping and misdemeanor battery.
A 20-year-old woman had finished shopping at Walmart on Buford Drive in Buford shortly before midnight Aug. 23, when she noticed a white BMW was parked behind her car. The woman didn’t realize the car was following her the entire trip home, police said.
When the woman arrived home, she walked to the front door. As she tried to open the door, a man grabbed her from behind. The woman screamed and her mother ran to the door. The man released her and fled in a white BMW, police said.
Police responded to the woman’s home and to the Walmart parking lot. In the parking lot, they found a white BMW that the woman said the attempted kidnapper was driving. She also identified the registered owner, Maclin, as the man who tried to kidnap her, police said.
Store surveillance video confirmed the same car had followed her home. After the BMW returned to the store, the suspect walked inside before fleeing, leaving the car behind, police said.
The next morning, Maclin called 911 and attempted to report his car as stolen. Dispatchers and police were aware the car was involved in the attempted kidnapping and went to Maclin’s location, but when they arrived, he was gone. Police believe Maclin tried to report his car stolen to “cover up” his connection to the kidnapping attempt.
“This was a very dangerous situation that could have ended differently if the woman had not screamed and had help from her mother,” said Cpl. Deon Washington, a spokesman for the Gwinnett County Police Department.
If you suspect you are being followed, police recommend calling 911 and driving to the nearest police precinct or “heavily populated area.”
A similar incident occurred at the same Walmart location in April. A woman was followed home by a man in a black Toyota. He flashed his genitals at her in her driveway before fleeing. That case was not connected to the attempted abduction and there has not been an arrest, Washington said.
Anyone with information on Maclin’s whereabouts is asked to contact Gwinnett County detectives at 770-513-5300 or Crime Stoppers at 404-577-8477. Crime Stoppers tips may be rewarded with up to $2,000 if they lead to an arrest or indictment.
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