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Claim of attempted child abduction at Burlington Kroger determined to be false; Florence woman charged

NKyTribune staff

The Boone County Sheriff’s office has issued a release stating that an alleged child abduction at Kroger in Burlington last week never happened.

A police report was filed and an account of the alleged incident was distributed widely on social media. The Sheriff’s office was also inundated with phone calls from concerned residents regarding the allegation.

After a through investigation, which included the examination of store surveillance video, Sheriff’s detectives determined the report was false. The woman who filed the report, Halie Snyder, initially stuck to her story, according to the release. When confronted with the video, investigators say Snyder, of Florence, apologized and said she was afraid of the man, but did not know why.

Snyder, 26, has been charged with Falsely Reporting an Incident, a misdemeanor.

The Boone County Sheriff’s office released the following statement regarding the investigation:

On Thursday, January 30, 2020, the Boone County Sheriff’s Office was made aware of a social media post that was being shared which alleged that a child abduction was attempted at the Burlington Kroger location on Patrick Drive. Through investigation, it has been determined that the allegation is false and criminal charges have been filed in this case.

Halie Snyder, 26,  (of) Florence reported to deputies that on Tuesday, January 28, 2020 at approximately 7:45 PM, she and her young son were shopping at the Burlington Kroger when a middle aged man, possibly in his 50’s began following her and her son throughout the store. Snyder alleged that the man attempted to grab her son by the arm as they were exiting an aisle way in the store. Snyder reported that she then grabbed her son and ran to a Kroger store clerk to report what had happened. Kroger employees looked for the man, but according to her report, he had already left the store and was not located. Snyder did not report the incident to deputies until Thursday, January 30. 

An investigation was launched after receiving Snyder’s report in conjunction with a multitude of phone calls and social media inquiries about the allegation. Kroger management fully cooperated with the investigation and detectives worked closely with their team to review hours of video surveillance. It was apparent that the surveillance did not match what Snyder had initially reported on January 30. The next day, Snyder was interviewed by detectives and maintained that her report was accurate. On Saturday, detectives again met with Kroger management to compare the footage against Snyder’s statement. It was determined that the man in question at no time ever acted suspicious in the store and did not attempt to grab Snyder’s son. The allegation was determined to be false. Once confronted with the findings from the surveillance, Snyder apologized to detectives, claimed she was scared but couldn’t specify as to why she feared the man that she had accused. 

Tuesday, a Boone County Criminal Summons was issued and Halie Snyder has been charged with one (1) count of Falsely Reporting an Incident, a Class A Misdemeanor. 

*Charges in a criminal complaint are accusations only. It is the government’s burden to prove the allegations beyond a reasonable doubt.

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