A US-based man tried to pawn his seven-month-old baby at a local store in Sarasota, Florida. After the store manager reported the incident and the father was caught on CCTV, the man claimed it was a prank for social media.
Brian Slocum, 43, filmed himself going into the pawn shop on Tuesday with his son and trying to sell the infant. He was also caught on on security cameras. Alarmed and disturbed, store owner Richard Jordan reported the incident immediately after Slocum left the store.
The police launched a massive manhunt, releasing Slocum's footage from the store. Several media outlets picked up the news.
“We’re investigating a suspicious incident that happened this afternoon, Tuesday, May 7, 2019. At approximately 5:15pm, an unknown man walked into A&F Pawn Jewelry and Loan, located at 1155 North Washington Boulevard, Sarasota. The employee was concerned for the safety of the child and contacted the Sarasota Police Department based on statements the male made during the contact with the clerk while he was in the store. Out of concern for the welfare of the child the Sarasota Police Department is asking for the public’s help in identifying the male subject in the video,” said the Sarasota Police Department in a statement.
“Currently there are no reports of missing children in the City of Sarasota and the surrounding counties. It’s unknown the relationship between the man on the video and the child. There is no additional information regarding this incident. Detectives are asking for the public’s help identifying the man on the video with the baby. The man was last seen driving a dark blue Nissan, unknown make. Anyone with information is asked to call 911 or the Sarasota Police Department at 941-316-1199,” added the department.
PLEASE RT: We’re investigating a suspicious incident that happened at A&F Pawn Jewelry & Loan. Employee was concerned for the safety of the child & contacted us based on statements the man with the baby made while he was in the store. More details at https://t.co/osLGCoVI3B pic.twitter.com/oUQyteC63y
— SarasotaPD (@SarasotaPD) May 8, 2019
Spotting himself on the news and the subject of a massive police hunt, Slocum contacted the cops. Soon dozens of officers arrived at Slocum's home. The Florida dad claimed he meant no harm to his little-one and that it was all a joke, filmed after his nephew asked him to make 'silly videos.' Speaking to media, Slocum claims that thought the store owner will give him you “ten grand or something.”
Instead, the “prank” misfired and the police didn't find it funny. However, no criminal charges have been filed against Slocum.
“The man in the video released last night is the father of the child seen in the infant carrier. He’s been identified as Brian Slocum, 43, of Sarasota. Detectives followed several leads to identify Mr. Slocum with a primary goal to determine the safety of the child. At the time, we did not know the relationship of Mr. Slocum and his child, therefore, the Sarasota Police Department utilized vast resources from several divisions to locate the child and identify Mr. Slocum,” said the Sarasota Police Department.
“The pawn shop clerk did take the comments made by Mr. Slocum very serious and we appreciate him immediately notifying the Sarasota Police Department.
“During this investigation, the Sarasota Police Department was contacted by Mr. Slocum who wanted to give a statement on what occurred. Mr. Slocum learned that he was on social media and that police were attempting to identify him. Mr. Slocum claims that his encounter with the store clerk was a prank and that he wanted to place his own video on social media.
“Detectives verified the child was safe and contacted the Florida Department of Children and Families Services as part of this investigation. At this time, there are no criminal charges for this investigation. We would like to thank our media partners for their assistance in this case, which prompted Mr. Slocum to call the Sarasota Police Department,” added the department.