Temar Boggs, 15, is being hailed as a hero in his Lancaster Township, Pennsylvania home, after he rescued a five-year-old girl from her abductor.
Boggs was hanging with friends Thursday when they were approached by a man who asked them if they had seen Jocelyn Rojas, the little girl who had gone missing that day. The teen and his friend, Chris Garcia, decided to help look for the girl and set off on their bikes. As they searched for the missing girl, a maroon car caught the attention of Temar Boggs. Police officers were at the scene and gathered in the street outside the apartment when Rojas lived. Boggs noticed the maroon car approach the scene and then turn around, after which, it began to travel erratically up and down nearby side streets. Boggs decided to investigate and set off after the suspicious car. He could see Jocelyn Rojas in the back of the car and he also got a look at the driver, an older white man.
The man driving the car clearly became aware of the two teen boys following him on their bikes, as he stopped the car and allowed Rojas to get out. After a moment, Rojas ran up to Boggs and told him that she needed her mom. Boggs and Garcia then took the girl to police officers.
The suspect disappeared at that time but was arrested Friday. Police attributed his arrest in part to the description provided to them by the teen boys and by the abducted girl herself. 73-year-old Harold Leroy Herr, who had previously served a long prison term for a similar crime, had abducted the girl from outside her grandmother’s house earlier that day. According to the girl, Herr threatened to kill her and took her to an, as yet, unknown location, before sexually assaulting her. When he returned with her to the neighborhood from which he abducted her, he was attempting to avoid drawing the attention of the police when he, instead, drew the attention of hero teen Boggs. It appears that Herr had intended to drop Rojas off close to where he grabbed her. The heavy police presence, however, might have caused him to abandon the idea, so the actions of Temar Boggs may, potentially, have saved her life.
Harold Herr faces multiple charges, including kidnapping and aggravated indecent assault. It has been reported that he denies all the charges. He was initially arrested for failing to register as a sex offender. Under the provisions of Megan’s Law, sex offenders are required to register every quarter and Herr had failed to register for the last quarter. He was positively identified by the boys and by Rojas herself. According to a report in Lancaster Online, Herr had served eleven years in prison for abducting and raping a 5-year-old girl in 1989. He was paroled in 1999. After he was found to be in possession of photographs of minors, he was taken back to prison to serve the rest of his term. He was finally released in 2010.
By Graham J Noble