BRANDON, Fla. (WFLA) — Sunday, June 12 just after 6:00 p.m. Derek Zitco got a frantic call from a woman at his church.
“She calls and I can barely understand what she’s saying, ‘can you get down here quickly, there’s a guy,’” Zitco said.
He rushed a few blocks to his church and found several adults who had barricaded two young girls inside of the building to keep them away from a man on the outside.
“What I was told by the adults that were still there is that this guy had his hands kind of on their necks and was kind of controlling them, saying he was their father and they were obviously shaking their heads saying no,” said Zitco.
They managed to keep the man away from the girls and called 9-1-1.
Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Deputies arrived and quickly found 37-year-old David Daniels a short distance away. They arrested him for the attempted abduction of the girls and for child abuse.
“The police had actually told us that day that he had skipped bail from Alabama from doing the exact same thing just weeks before,” Zitco said.
Police in Foley, Alabama had arrested Daniels earlier in June when he claimed there were injured girls in a shed.
Police found no evidence of injured girls and arrested Daniels for criminal trespassing and public intoxication.
Daniels was later released on bond in Alabama, but then traveled out of state to Florida to stay at a relatives house. His troubles in Hillsborough County began after his arrest in Alabama.
Now, he’s been released on bond in the Hillsborough County Case and State Representative Mike Beltran is outraged.
“He’s obviously a danger to the community. He’s created now a pattern of doing this and the circumstances of the crime show that he doesn’t realize that he did something wrong and that he needs to stop doing this,” Beltran said.
He lives in the area and represents voters in the Fishhawk Community.
“This could have been my kids, it could have been my neighbors’ kids and it could have been somebody I knew personally and it’s certainly one of my constituents and first of all, I’m appalled that this happened,” said Beltran. “There should be places where kids can go, kids who are 11 or 12 can go for a short period where their parents know where they’re going and be relatively safe and apparently our neighborhood is not that type of place and if our neighborhood is not that type of place, then I don’t know where is.”
He’s calling on the Hillsborough County State Attorney to look at the case again and to file a motion to have Daniels’ bond revoked.