ORLANDO, Fla. – A 23-year-old man was arrested Sunday on allegations of kidnapping a 9-year-old girl at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando.
Jason Mikel, of Illinois, was arrested on charges of kidnapping a child under the age of 13, battery and possession of cannabis less than 20 grams, according to an arrest affidavit.
During Mikel's first appearance before a judge Monday, a defense attorney told the judge the evidence does not support the recommended charge of kidnapping. The judge gave the state 24 hours to file a supplemental report, but Mikel will be held without bond until further notice.
Orlando police said Mikel and the girl were in the locker area of the Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey attraction when he touched her shoulders and told her to go outside, where her mother was waiting. The girl got scared and was able to get away and returned to her mother, police said.
A witness said she saw Mikel put his hands on the girl and told her, "Mommy is over here," according to police. The witness said the girl looked very scared and broke free and ran over to her mom, according to officials.
The witness told Universal employees about the incident, and Mikel ran away, police said.
The girl's mother told police she had lost sight of her daughter. She said her daughter was very scared as she ran to her and told her someone tried to grab her, according to the affidavit.
Employees followed Mikel to Hogwarts Express, where he was detained and arrested, police said.
Mikel had a scraped knee and a bloody lip, but it's not known how he suffered the injuries, police said. He refused medical treatment, according to police.
The affidavit said police found about 2 grams of marijuana on Mikel.
Mikel, who was trespassed from all Universal properties, was booked into the Orange County Jail.
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