An Albany man ahs been charged with menacing and criminal possession of a weapon after police say he tried to abduct two young women at a busy Albany bus stop. While it appears to be an isolated incident, police are urging all residents to be alert, especially since it's someone's vigilance that helped one of the women escape.
ALBANY, N.Y. -- "That's like uncomfortable. I didn't even notice. I know Albany's not the nicest, but it's so close," said St. Rose student Jesse Petrucca.
News of two attempted abductions at a busy bus stop in Albany has college students on alert. Police say Anthony Collins, 54, tried to abduct the two young women Friday morning during rush hour, within 30 minutes apart at the stop at Western at Partridge, next to the UAlbany Alumni Quad and diagonal from the College of Saint Rose.
"In the first attempt, he approached the victim from the rear with a knife. He held the knife at her back and began to walk her away from the area. At that point, we had a good Samaritan, he interrupted the attack and the victim was able to run away, get on the bus and out of the area," said University Police Department Inspector Aran Mull.
It's having that kind of awareness that police want to promote.
Mull said, "Bystander intervention is something we do talk about a lot here at the university. It's challenging for a police officer to recommend that someone step forward and put themselves in danger, what I can say in this case, what he did helped someone. Definitely kept them from being taken out of the area and potentially something much worse."
"The student did what they were supposed to do, they saw someone in trouble and said, hey stop and everything turned out well. That's what you're supposed to do," said UAlbany student James Noel. "Hopefully people will realize that and think college students aren't just about bad things. We do look out for each other as well."
Collins will be arraigned on misdemeanor charges in court on Wednesday.
Police say these two female victims must come forward for harsher charges to be brought up against Collins.
Anyone with information is asked to call University Police at (518) 442-3131.