Police: Man tried to kidnap high school cheerleader
PAWTUCKET, R.I. —
A Pawtucket man has been charged with kidnapping and attempting to sexually assault a high school cheerleader.
Matthew Barlow, 24, was arrested Tuesday. He was arraigned Wednesday in District Court in Providence.
The judge set a $50,000 bail with surety and issued a no-contact order. A Pawtucket police prosecutor asked that Barlow monitored electronically when released.
Police said Barlow followed a 17-year-old girl while she was on her way to an event at Tolman High School on Aug. 3.
The teenager told police she saw Barlow following her, and when she got to Front Street he attacked, covering her mouth with his and tried to drag her away.
The cheerleader fought and got away.
"She's doing well. She was not physically injured during the attack. I have to commend her for her courageousness and her ability to fight off her attacker," said Maj. Arthur Martins of the Pawtucket Police Department.
Martins said it was still pictures from surveillance video that was aired on TV that helped police arrest Barlow after weeks of searching.
"It was direct tips from the public. We put the images out with the media so we have the media to thank for that," he said.
Martins said Barlow didn't know the teen and acted on an urge.
"Everybody has urges but who really goes through with them? That's the difference. He went and took the step to actually do it. No excuses," he said.
Police said Barlow works as a security guard.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.