'An absolute nightmare': Girl kidnapped by sex attacker Peter Carroll praised for her bravery (video)
THE mother of a ten-year-old girl kidnapped by a sex attacker has praised her daughter for escaping his clutches.
Peter Carroll, 52, grabbed the child as she went to the shop to buy rabbit food.
He pretended he knew her parents before he placed his hand on her shoulder and guided her into bushes, where he tried to indecently assault her.
The girl screamed and ran away. She was able to give a detailed description of him, which led to Carroll's arrest an hour later.
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The mum-of-two, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said: "Never in our wildest dreams did we expect this to happen to us.
"It has been an absolute nightmare.
"If she had not screamed and run away, I dread to think what could have happened.
"We feel really lucky. It could have been a whole different situation.
"This could have been a murder inquiry and she may never have been found.
"I'm just so thankful she is at home and safe with us."
The woman had allowed her daughter to go to the supermarket to buy rabbit food on her own to give her some freedom.
Carroll had been prowling the area looking for a child. The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has released CCTV footage to the Mail showing Carroll searching for a child.
The girl's mother said: "She asked to go to the shop and we thought that as she was leaving primary school soon we would give her a little bit of freedom.
"I'm very overprotective usually and now I'm worse.
"This has changed her. She is shy and scared to talk to adults. She will not walk past where it happened.
"I'm just really proud of her – she has been amazing throughout this ordeal."
The terrified child went to Tesco in Bridlington after the attack and got the pet food before returning home in tears to tell her parents what had happened.
They immediately drove her back to the street with the police to try to trace Carroll, who was eventually spotted on CCTV in the resort's town centre.
The girl told the police her abductor was bald, with a beard and was wearing a distinctive green T-shirt.
Carroll, who matched the description, was caught nearby sitting on a bench just over an hour after snatching the little girl on July 29 last year in Hilderthorpe Road, Bridlington.
Carroll, of Batley, has been convicted of kidnapping, committing an offence with intent to cause a sex act and inciting a child to commit sex acts.
A jury at Hull Crown Court returned unanimous verdicts after just 20 minutes.
Judge Simon Jack told Carroll he wanted reports on him to assess the risk he poses to children.
He has been ordered to sign the sex offenders register and is due to be sentenced next month.
Prosecutor Sara Hill-Summerlin said: "This was a prime example of a speedy reaction by the police, early advice by the CPS and co-operation between police and the CPS to bring Peter Carroll to justice swiftly.
"This was clearly very frightening for the victim and I wholeheartedly commend her for her bravery in coming forward and her family for supporting her in seeking the justice she deserved."