The parents who fought off a would-be kidnapper in a Costco parking lot over the weekend say the encounter has them uneasy and looking over their shoulders at all times.
"We got to think about this idiot or any idiot creep,” father Peter Kopchak said. “You're always looking over your shoulder."
Saturday afternoon in the parking lot of Costco in Vista, the couple was confronted by a stranger.
That stranger, identified by the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department as Adam Glavinic, pulled open the couple's rear car door while they were backing out of a parking space and tried to snatch 2-year-old Peter from his child seat.
“I don't know what his intentions were to do with my son, but it wasn't a good thing. There was nothing good he was going to do to my son,” the boy’s mother, Jennifer Lawson, said.
Kopchak and Lawson were forced to defend their child and themselves until an off-duty sheriff’s deputy showed up to help.
“I think I hit him once and he hit the ground, then I just got on top of him,” Kopchak said.
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Glavinic, 37, was arrested, booked at the Vista Detention Center and charged with serious crimes including attempted kidnapping and being under the influence of a controlled substance.
Twenty-four hours later Glavinic, who lives in the North County, was out on bail. Now, the victims and their neighbors are on high alert.
“I’m not going to let this happen to my kids, and I’m damn sure not going to let it happen to anyone else,” Kopchak said.
Little Peter and his 9-month-old brother who was also in the backseat weren’t hurt physically, but the emotional impact of Glavinic’s brazen snatching attempt will stick with their parents for a while.
"I was up all night last night from 12 to 5 o'clock going up to check on him every 30 minutes,” Lawson said. “I just can't get this guy’s face out of my head."
Their scare sent a shockwave through the North County community, and parents and neighbors banded together to warn each other on Next Door and other social media sites.
"I am just so glad people are sharing this and talking about it and letting people know this stuff is not a joke,” Kopchak said.
The parents said they were caught off guard by Glavinic in broad daylight.