GARNER — According to police, a man who was driving an ice cream truck kidnapped a young girl Thursday night in a Garner neighborhood.
Omar Kareem Sellers, 39, has been charged with first-degree kidnapping, statutory sex offense, statutory rape and indecent liberties with a minor. The incident prompted authorities to issue an Amber Alert for the missing girl who was returned later to her family.
Joann Octetree said it was a harrowing couple of hours. One minute her daughter was outside playing with friends on Avery Street. The next minute her daughter was missing.
"First thing that went through my mind was where she at, how does this man look. I was very panicky and shaky," said Octetree.
Authorities say Sellers was driving the ice cream truck when he took off with a girl inside. Frantic, Octetree called the girl's mother and went looking for her.
"Everywhere I went they see the van come this way they see the can go this way but as I went I didn't see no van. No ice cream van period," said Octetree.
A short time later Raleigh police officers spotted Seller's truck and found the girl inside with him on Creech Road.
"We came out in force. We called in a lot of people and put a lot of effort into located her quickly and safely. And we're glad she's reunited with her family," said Lieutenant Wayne Moore.
Octetree said the girl was missing for about three hours Thursday before they found her.
"Right is right. Wrong is wrong. And he needs to suffer and pay," said Octetree.
Neighbors said during the summer kids gather out in front of the street all the time. But they have never seen an ice cream go up and down Avery Street. Police believe it is an isolated incident.
"He need to be chastised. I wouldn't want nobody messing with my kids or grandkids," said Garner resident Ralph Shaw.
Police say the truck is registered to Sellers but he does not have a vendors license. He is expected to appear in court on Monday.