SUFFOLK, Va. (WAVY) – Police say a woman has been arrested after she attempted to abduct a four-year-old boy Tuesday morning at a Walmart in Suffolk.
According to police, officers responded to a report of a woman attempting to take a child around 9 a.m. at the Walmart located in the 6200 block of College Drive.
Police say a preliminary investigation revealed that the boy and his mother were in the self-checkout lane when the suspect, identified as 35-year-old Keeta Neville, took the boy out of the cart and attempted to leave the store with him.
Multiple Walmart employees stopped Neville, which resulted in her putting the boy down, leaving the store, and running through the parking lot. Police were able to locate Neville around 9:14 a.m. near Applebee’s on the other side of College Drive on Lake View Parkway.
Neville has been arrested and charged with felony abduction, four counts of assault on a law enforcement officer and simple assault.
WAVY reached out to Suffolk Police for more information on the assault on a law enforcement charges. Police confirm Neville resisted arrest.
Neville has a criminal history of trespassing, disorderly conduct, indecent exposure and assaulting law enforcement officers. In 2021, police say Neville tried to break into a Norfolk home while covered in paint, then assaulted five police officers.
Ronchelle Beasley of Norfolk told 10 On Your Side she believes she had an interaction with Neville last year while taking her then-3-year-old nephew to the doctor.
“Asking questions, giving out compliments, randomly touching him, and I’m just like, you don’t touch nobody’s child without permission,” Beasley said.
Beasley said a red flag went off in her head as she watched Neville’s hand linger on her nephew before asking her to stop touching him. When Beasley saw Neville’s mugshot Tuesday, she instantly recognized the face and name.
“I’d never forget her face,” Beasley said. “I was telling my sister if we would’ve taken our eyes off that baby, she was going to take him.”
She’s glad the situation quickly came to a halt.
A spokesperson for Walmart Corporate sent 10 On Your Side the following: “The safety of customers and associates is among our top priorities. We’re grateful to our associates and local police for their quick thinking and responsiveness to this situation, and we’ll work closely with law enforcement throughout their investigation.“
Check WAVY.com for the latest updates.