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Attempted kidnap victim, 911 caller speaking out after suspect’s arrest

Tyler Healey, 23, is scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday in Woburn District Court.

Attempted Kidnapping:

With her alleged attacker now in custody, the victim of an attempted kidnapping in Burlington is now opening up about the traumatic experience.

Burlington police arrested Tyler Healey, 23, in Winthrop on Tuesday, connecting him with an incident Sunday night in which a 37-year-old woman was grabbed on the sidewalk, touched indecently, and dragged by a man until she was able to fight free from his grasp. Her shirt was also removed in the assault.

Police charged Healey with assault with intent to rape, attempted kidnapping, assault with intent to commit a felony, and indecent assault and battery on a person over 14.

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The victim, Zayra Mendoza, spoke with NewsCenter 5 this week, explaining that she thought of her 9-year-old daughter as the assault occurred and knew she had to fight back.

Her brother, serving as Mendoza’s Spanish-to-English translator for the news outlet, said, “She says she doesn’t understand why the person was in the street, did what he did and why her?”

The incident was captured by surveillance video from a nearby building, showing Mendoza walking on the sidewalk near the Middlesex Turnpike as a man follows behind, grabs hold of her and tries to drag her away, before she is able to escape as a driver pulls over to check that she is OK.

Ariel Naylor, the driver who saw what was happening and pulled over to call 911, told WCVB that she “came around that last corner and there was the girl being dragged through the parking lot by … her hair. She had no clothes on the top half, he had ripped that off of her, and was dragging her and she was fighting like hell.”

Naylor said Mendoza made all the right efforts to get to safety, saying, “She knew to get to the light – to get to the side of the road so someone could help her. She made it possible for someone to help her.”

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Mendoza was grateful that Naylor pulled over, telling WCVB through her brother, “I want to say thank you to her because she’s the only woman who stopped.”

“When you see something that doesn’t seem right to you, make that phone call to the police,” Middlesex County District Attorney Marian Ryan told NBC10 Boston.

Burlington police Chief Thomas Browne made it clear to NBC10 that the victim did not do anything to provoke this attack, saying “This was a crime of opportunity and we need to make sure that we take opportunities away from people like this.”

Healey is scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday in Woburn District Court.

Burlington Police release business video footage from attempted abduction (5/8/2022) from John Guilfoil Public Relations on Vimeo.

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