VANCOUVER, Wash. (KOIN) — Quentin is a typically bubbly 5-year-old who likes to play goofy games with his mom, Jennifer Crothers and play outside.
Late Wednesday afternoon they were enjoying a day at Marshall Park in Vancouver when she said a man approached Quentin on the slide. It was a parent’s worst nightmare.
“I had never had fear like that in my life,” she said. “I can’t talk about it without being affected.”
Crothers said the man — later identified as Khael Aguilar-McNamee — tried to grab Quentin. But the boy fought back, pulled away and smacked the man.
“I grabbed my arm and smacked him!” Quentin said.
He was able to break free. And then Aguilar-McNamee allegedly came after Crothers.
“I said, ‘Back off!'”
He yelled something like, “He’s mine” and lunged toward her. She told authorities she screamed for help, then put her hand on his chest to try and hold him back, but he tried to hit her in the face with his left fist, the probable cause document said.
She ran and began yelling for help.
“I know it’s just a really short time, I can see all those people not doing anything, not even moving,” she told KOIN 6 News. “Just watching. ‘Sorry.'”
But Crothers is deaf. She couldn’t make a 911 call.
“My fear is in that moment if he catches me and he hurts me, he’s going back and take (Quentin) because he’s claiming him as his.”
A woman who saw what was going on got inbetween the boy and Aguilar-McNamee, the document said.
Crothers wants to thank that woman who stepped in to stop the man from reaching them.
“Nobody did anything but a woman, I don’t know who she is. I didn’t get a chance to thank her because so much commontion was going on,” she said. “I really would like to know who that person is because she truly saved us.”
Vancouver police were called to the playground and found Aguilar-McNamee sitting in the gazebo, with a hoodie over his head and his face down on a picnic table.
Documents show he allegedly admitted trying to grab the boy off the slide and that he was sexually attracted to children.
The 24-year-old, who is 5-feet-4 and 245 pounds, is being held in the Clark County Jail on a kidnapping charge.
On Friday he was supposed to appear in court. But those proceeding didn’t go as planned. A deputy reported Aguilar-McNamee was throwing things, including fluids, at a window and refused to get dressed.
Meanwhile, Jennifer Crothers said her son is having night terrors.
“It’s pretty sad,” she said. “That’s our community park and it’s not safe.”