SOUTH OGDEN — Police are investigating the “very unusual” circumstance of two attempted child kidnappings within a few days. One arrest was made and officers are looking for a suspect in the second incident.
On April 20, South Ogden officers arrested Ethan Swisher, 31, after he allegedly tried to kidnap a 10-year-old boy walking home from school near Burch Creek Park.
Then on Friday, a 5-year-old girl was playing in her front yard with several other children when a man allegedly tried to entice her into his car. The man fled and police are trying to identify and arrest him.
“There’s no connection between the two,” Sgt. David Labbe, South Ogden police spokesperson, said Monday. “But this is very unusual” to have such similar incidents so close together, he said.
Police posted photos of the Friday suspect’s car — apparently a dark-colored, older Hyundai Accent — on social media and a description of the man: white, in his mid 20s, with long brown hair and black-framed glasses with thick lenses.
Anyone with information on Friday’s incident is asked to call the 24-hour South Ogden emergency dispatch line at 801-629-8221.
The mother of the 5-year-old girl called police at about 2:50 p.m. to report the incident, in a neighborhood near the intersection of Holroyd and Chambers. She said one of the children yelled out, causing her to look up, Labbe said.
“She saw this gray sedan parked in front of the house and the male driver speaking to the daughter,” Labbe said. “They made eye contact and the male sped off.”
The man apparently had been trying to coax the girl to go with him, he said.
In the April 20 case, a father called police to report that a man tried to get his 10-year-old son to go with him. He told the boy his parents had asked him to take him home, but the boy refused and ran from the man, Labbe said.
A Burch Creek Elementary crossing guard witnessed the incident from a distance and was able to identify Swisher, Labbe said.
“We had had some reports of Swisher hanging around the park,” he said.
The Weber County Attorney’s Office charged Swisher with first-degree felony attempted child kidnapping. He is held without bail in the county jail in Ogden.