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Quick-thinking woman may have prevented abduction

A quick-thinking woman who observed suspicious activity near a Merced elementary school Wednesday morning may have prevented a child abduction.

Merced Police Lt. Matt Williams said the woman saw a first-grader being lured to a white van on East Donna Drive near Peterson Elementary School about 10:10 a.m., could tell the situation was not right and pulled her car in front of the van, telling the boy to run.

"It's a good thing we have people like her out there," Williams said.

The van's driver is described as a Latino woman with bleached blond hair.

There were two people in the back of the vehicle, which is a full-sized, white-colored van thought to be in beat-up condition.

Williams said anyone with information about the incident or the suspects is urged to call the Merced Police Department at 385-6905.

Associate Editor Doane Yawger can be reached at 209 385-2485 or