She says a man nearly kidnapped her after she made a phone call to arrange a ride to pick her up.
It happened Saturday night around 10:30 p.m. Parents Brooke and David were in route home from Idaho when they learned the news.
According to Bailey, she was at the corn maze with her friends and was afraid of breaking her curfew. She says she stepped away from her friends near the north entrance of the corn maze to call her grandmother to come pick her up, as she finished the call and put her phone back into her pocket, “she turned around and there was a man standing over her with hood over his head,” explained Bailey’s mom Brooke.
According to Bailey, who wasn’t able to make out his ethnicity but describes him as a dark male with a dark beard. She says he was wearing a dark hoodie (possibly blue or black) with sweatpants and dark shoes.
“I turned around and he’s just like shaking me, he goes down my wrist and starts yanking at me” recounts Bailey Gallagher.
Her parents say the fact that she got into a “tug a war” with the man trying to pull away from him while screaming for help most likely saved her.
Bailey says as people began hearing the commotion and started making their way towards her, the man pulled away and ran off into the parking lot. She was able to find her friends and officers who were onsite to alert them to what just happened.
A spokesperson for Lehi City Police tells ABC4 in a statement:
The 14-year old girl was in Corn Belly’s corn maze with other teenagers. Upon finishing the maze, she left her group to meet her ride. While she was in the area between the parking lot and corn maze a man grabbed her shoulders and shook her a little, then grabbed her wrist. She screamed, which caught the attention of the others. The assailant then ran towards the parking lot.
The victim contacted her friends who then came out of the Corn Belly’s establishment to get her. They took her to the police that were stationed at Corn Belly’s. A search of the parking lot was conducted, but the assailant was never found.
Brooke Gallagher says Bailey as well as their other kids goes to the popular corn maze all the time as they have season passes and normally feels comfortable allowing them to go.
A spokesperson for Cornbelly’s told ABC4 that they weren’t aware of the incident but are glad there were officers were onsite who could respond quickly.
Brooke Gallagher says her concern is the suspect had the bravery to do this in such a public setting.
“This man is so brazen enough to do this in a place that is patrolled by police officers and she’s not a smaller child. He was willing to take on that battle,” said Gallagher
It’s unknown if the man had been watching Bailey and waited for an opportunity to attack.
David Gallagher, Bailey’s father, says this experience has traumatized his daughter to the point that she doesn’t want to go outside or even walk to her bus stop to get to school. He says they are doing what they can to comfort her.
“Just letting her know that she didn’t do anything wrong, cause a lot of times kids take it personal like why is this happening to me” says David Gallagher.
They are just happy she’s safe at home but David and Brooke Gallagher wanted to share this story to alert parents to encourage their children to always stay vigilant and do what it takes to stay safe even if that means remaining with a group.
“Strength in numbers is always the number one thing” says David Gallagher.
Bailey says she hopes there is someone who happened to see something or perhaps the car the suspect was in and able to let police know that information.
If you were at the Cornbelly’s that night and have any information, you’re asked to call Lehi Police.