Georgia girl fights off abductor

'Stranger Danger' training saved girl.

A Georgia seven year-old fought off a 25-year-old man who was trying to abduct her from a Bremen, Ga., Wal-Mart. Brittney Baxter was browsing the toy aisle in the store when Thomas A. Woods of Austell, Ga., came up from behind and grabbed her and put his hand over her mouth and attempted to subdue the girl to take her out of the store. Surveillance cameras in the store captured the whole ordeal on camera as Baxter fought back against her kidnapper, kicking and screaming. “I was screaming and kicking and trying to get away and he put his hand over my mouth.”, Baxter said in an interview at home, just a few hours after the attack happened.

The fight the second-grader put up worked, saying “He just dropped me and went and ran off”, recounting the incident, as Woods gave up and dropped the girl, and made an escape out of the store. Woods had previously served time in prison for an involuntary manslaughter conviction that had dated back to when he was 17 years-old. He finished his prison sentence in October 2011 and is currently out on parole. Police arrested Woods after going over the surveillance video of the attack in the store and his escape to the parking lot, getting video of Woods getting into his car and driving off. From that footage, the authorities were able to release a detailed alert that led to Woods arrest less than an hour later, in Tallapoosa, Ga., which is about ten miles from the Wal-Mart store.

When arrested, Woods denied having anything to do with the botched abduction, saying “I didn’t touch anybody. I didn’t bother nobody. I was never there.”

Woods is charged with attempted kidnapping and is currently being held at the Haralson County Jail.

Baxter’s family is very grateful that their daughter is okay, and happy that she has so much fight in her. “I’m very proud of her. I just thank the Lord that she got away.” says Randall Baxter, Brittany’s father. The girl’s mother, Georgeann Baxter, says that she is still “scared to death.” about what happened. But Brittney has a good head on her shoulders, giving advice about knowing what to do should something like this ever happen again, saying “Always scream, try to scream, and kick as hard as you can and go get someone you can trust.”