Editors Note: Charges against the man were never filed, according to District Attorney Officer Steve Walker.
El Cajon Police said they arrested a man after he allegedly attempted to kidnap a 1-year-old girl from her mother at the Parkway Plaza mall on Sunday afternoon.
Several people told police they witnessed the man attempt to grab the child from her mother by one of the mall's entrances and then flee the scene around 3:15 p.m. at Parkway Plaza.
The mother told police she was walking hand in hand with her child when the suspect tried to tug the 1-year-old away. The mom held on, yanking the child toward her and the suspect ran away, police said.
Officers located Dallas Freedom Jones, 40, who closely matched witness descriptions, behind a nearby Home Depot. Witnesses then positively identified the suspect upon seeing him again, police said.
Police arrested Jones and confirmed Jones is homeless.
The San Diego Sheriff's Department records indicate Jones is being held on $100,000 bail for a felony kidnapping charge. He also has two misdemeanor charges, but it was unclear if they were related to this incident.
He is next due in court on Tuesday.
Police said they believe this was an isolated incident and there were no suspects outstanding.
Parents and grandparents in the community told NBC 7 they were upset and angry after hearing the news.
"It scares the hell out of me and I feel for that mom," Joe Gonzalez said as he was shopping in the area. "I've got two little girls too and I worry about that all the time, especially here I've heard the stories about Parkway being a major hub for sex trafficking."
If there is anyone with further information regarding this incident, please call the El Cajon Police Department at (619) 579-3311.