COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho — Staff from Coeur d'Alene Parasail stepped in to help a 10-year-old boy escape from an attempted child enticement incident on Tuesday.
Around 8 p.m., surveillance video shows a man approaching the Couer d'Alene Parasail booth with a child.
According to the Coeur d'Alene Police Department, the victim approached several employees at CDA Parasail and told them a man tried to get him into one of the nearby boats.
"Immediately the kid went around me and kind of hid behind me, and stated, 'I don't know that man and he's not my dad,'" Jamin Rodriguez, owner of CDA Parasail, said. "I look at the guy he's with and he's like, 'No, that's my kid, I'm his dad, he woke up from a nap a little bit ago and he's just kind of groggy from that and he is just kind of confused."
According to the Kootenai County Sheriff's Office, the suspect, later identified as John Marshall Randolph, allegedly told the boy and multiple employees that he was the boy's father. Rodriguez sensed something was wrong. After moving the child out of the way and questioning the man, he told Rodriguez he would "get the boy's mom." Rodriguez discreetly called the police but kept moving.
"He started heading back down the dock, and I'm like, 'Riley, you stay with the kid, find his mom, I'm gonna go follow this guy.'" he added. "We can't let him go. If we let him go, he could be gone forever."
Rodriguez has kids of his own and felt the danger of the child who was now hiding behind him. He followed Randolph for 15 minutes around the lake, updating dispatch on his every step, much to the man's dismay.
"He's like, 'Stop following me, leave and go back to your booth,' and I was like, 'No.'" he said. "He was like a main actor in like a horror movie, like that kinda creepy oddness."
Meanwhile, his employee Riley Estes stayed with the boy and went to find his actual mom. After trying her cell phone, they went to look in the Lake CDA Park.
"He says, 'she's right there, can we run?' and so we both started to run to her," Estes said. "He was crying, super sad. Mom was shocked, obviously."
The boy's mother told KREM 2's Morgan Trau that everything feels surreal, but she's so grateful for the help of the men.
For Rodriguez updates, officers then arrived on the scene and arrested Randolph.
Randolph was booked into the Kootenai County Jail for one count of child enticement and has since bonded out.
"I just hope that the law does a good job at the situation and, importantly, that just in general, people are just more aware of the fact that this stuff could happen in our little town of Coeur d'Alene," Rodriguez said