Police lights
Representation. The lights of a police car. tevenet/Pixabay


  • A 28-year-old man allegedly tried to abduct a 10-year-old girl outside her school in Thornton, Colorado
  • The suspect's parents went to police after identifying their son and his vehicle in surveillance photos 
  • Police were able to confirm that the suspect's cell phone was in the area when the incident occurred

A 28-year-old man in Colorado was taken into custody Monday after his parents turned him in to police when they recognized him and his vehicle in surveillance photos.

Diego James Gettler was charged with second-degree kidnapping Thursday after he allegedly tried to abduct a 10-year-old girl outside her school in Thornton, Colorado, according to the Thornton Police Department.

Police were called to the STEM Launch School in Thornton at about 7:30 a.m. on Sept. 23, People reported.

The victim allegedly told police she was sitting on some school steps when a man approached her and asked her if she attended the school.

She told authorities that she started to feel uncomfortable when the stranger walked behind her and up the stairs and then turned around and walked back toward her.

When she stood up to leave, the suspect allegedly wrapped his hands and arms around the girl's waist from behind, causing her to scream, an arrest affidavit obtained by People stated.

According to the affidavit, the man allegedly tried to cover the child's mouth with his hands to prevent her from screaming.

The girl told detectives that she grabbed at the man and was able to pull down the mask he was wearing, causing the man to flee on foot, the affidavit said.

At the time of the incident, no other students, teachers or staff were in the area.

Surveillance video obtained by police showed the suspect parking a gray Saturn Aura, walking toward the school and attempting to abduct the girl. He then ran off, climbed into the passenger side of his vehicle and then drove off, according to the affidavit.

That same day, authorities released surveillance footage to the public of the suspect, who was wearing a black sweatshirt with "three blue and orange Adidas symbols on the back of the hooded sweatshirt," as well as black pants and black shoes.

Police also released images of the vehicle, which had damage to its driver's side.

On Monday, Gettler's parents went to the Thornton police station, spoke to a detective and "identified [Gettler] as possibly being involved due to them recognizing him based on photographs from the surveillance that was released, as well as his vehicle matching the unique characteristics of the suspect vehicle in this case," the affidavit stated.

The suspect's parents told police that Gettler owns and drives a gray Saturn Aura that has damage on the driver's side" caused by an earlier car accident, according to the document.

His parents also confirmed that Gettler has to enter the vehicle from the passenger side, the affidavit said.

Police were able to confirm that Gettler's cell phone was in the area when the incident occurred.

Gettler was later arrested in his car outside a Home Depot in Parker Monday and was booked into the Adams County jail. He has not entered a plea.

A hearing is scheduled for Oct. 5.

Representational Image. pixabay