San Francisco police arrest suspect in attempted kidnapping of teen

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Two men are being hailed as heroes after thwarting the kidnapping of a 13-year-old girl in San Francisco's West Portal neighborhood.

And today SFPD announced that within six hours of the botched kidnapping, they had found their suspect, 27-year-old Lee Mason Eigl of San Francisco.

A neighbor's surveillance camera on Forest Side Avenue near Taraval Street shows a black Volkswagen Passat speeding off in a southbound direction around 5 p.m.

Just seconds before, police say the driver was trying to kidnap a 13-year-old girl who was walking home.

"The victim screamed which drew the attention of witnesses, who opened the door and pulled the victim out of the car," said SFPD Assistant Chief Toney Chaplin at news conference outside Bayview Station this morning.

The witnesses, two men, who live on Forest Side and did not want to appear on camera, are now being credited with saving the teen's life. The pair was able to get a partial license plate number on the getaway car and by 10:30 p.m., alert officers from Taraval station spotted the vehicle at apartments near SF State University.

They eventually arrested 27-year-old Lee Eigl.

"Eigl was taken into custody at approximately 1a.m. by the officers from Taraval station when he emerged from a residence and started to drive the vehicle," said Chaplin.

According to Eigl's LinkedIn page, he attended Galileo High School, college in San Diego and has an engineering background.

Police served a search warrant at his parent's flat on 10th Avenue near Lincoln Avenue earlier today.

The suspect's mother, Gail Eigl says her family and friends are stunned by her son's arrest.

"He was driving into Taraval station to try to talk to them. He was not given a lawyer - at any time. He was read his Miranda he said he he had been drinking a little bit and smoking marijuana and he was out of it," said Gail Eigl.

Eigl's mother told Sarah Ravani with the SF Chronicle that her son was "probably not mentally healthy."

When asked what she thought of son's arrest, she replied, "You feel like crap of course, really? Like, that's a question? You feel like the worst mother in the world! Really? Like yeah, cuz that's not a fair question."

"Yeah, I knew I was hiding a closet rapist in my house!! Yeah!! yeah!!" she said sarcastically.
Eigl's arrest, however, was welcome news for people who live in West Portal, who say they've been afraid to let their kids walk the streets.

"That's fantastic news. With the gentlemen that helped the girl across the street in the video [hopefully] they have a case," said Brian Crosby, who provided police with the surveillance video.

"We all do the best we can- we all try to keep our eyes open for any activity inthe area and we all kind of stick together," said Norman Dudum.

Eigl has been booked for kidnapping and assault with intent to commit rape on a person under 18 years of age.