A missing 10-year-old girl was finally located with the help of two Louisiana sanitation workers who alerted police after she was abducted by a registered sex offender.
Dion Merrick shared on Facebook that he called police after noticing a gray sedan parked in a field in St. Martin Parish on Monday that matched a police alert about the missing girl.
The New Iberia Police Department issued an alert Sunday night for Jalisa Lasalle, who was in imminent danger, and notified the community that her abductor was last seen driving a Nissan sedan.
Police said on Facebook that people had spotted the car driven by Michael Sereal, a 33-year-old registered sex offender, according to Iberia Parish Sherriff’s Office records.
Dion Merrick immediately called 911 and placed his truck to block the driveway until a deputy arrived. Sereal was taken into custody by St. Martin Parish deputies and transferred to the custody of the New Iberia Police Department, authorities said. An arrest warrant was issued for aggravated kidnapping.
Posted by Dion Merrick on Monday, 8 February 2021
“I just saved that little girl’s life,” Merrick said during a Facebook video. “Thank God they got him now.” State Police said Sereal was known to a relative of the girl, but has been convicted of carnal knowledge of a juvenile about 15 years ago, according to police records.
“Thank u for saving that baby girl,” one user wrote on Merrick’s Facebook page. “My daughter has been missing for 22 years. We need more people like you.”