Some neighbors say they recognize 'person of interest,' in west side kidnapping case

Some neighbors say they recognize 'person of interest,' in west side kidnapping case

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - In the Cleveland neighborhood where a 6-year-old girl was kidnapped from her West 104th Street home, people are taking a close look at a newly released sketch.

The FBI and Cleveland Police say the sketch is that of a "person of interest," created after investigators talked to a neighbor who says he saw the man in his back yard and asked him what he was doing.

Jason Thomas lives near the home where the little girl was kidnapped from. He says he knows the person in the sketch.

"He used to stay on 105th behind my brother," said Thomas, "Yeah, he was a little strange all the time, a little distant, kind of slow. He just got out of jail last year. I'm not sure for what," said Thomas.

Dean Furzello, who lives in Thomas' home, agrees that the sketch looks like someone they both know.

"Yeah, but who knows for sure. They are checking. They were already told that it might be, you know. Now they are checking. That's all I can say," said Furzello.

The girl who was kidnapped is now back with her family, according to police, but the suspect who held her for close to 17 hours -- at least part of the time in a bedroom inside a home somewhere in the Cleveland area --  is obviously still out there.

The man who abducted the six-year-old has also been forensically linked to an attempted abduction in Elyria.

While police search, Thomas says he won't let his daughter play outside by herself.

"She doesn't -- ever. Not at all," added Thomas.

A $20,000 reward is being offered.

Call the special confidential tip line at 216-622-6342 if you have information that could help solve this case.

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