Mother recalls stopping attempted kidnapping at 'Meet the Teacher Night'

A North Texas mother whose child was nearly kidnapped at a "Meet the Teacher Night" is talking about the ordeal.

The school where it happened also announced increased safety changes.

The charter school, International Leadership of Texas in North Richland Hills, said it has strengthened all safety protocols since this incident.

The observant mother said she’s still struggling to come to terms with what could have happened. 

It was an exciting night for an 6-year-old elementary student last week with a chance to meet his teacher before the new school year.

"Why us? I was like, that’s crazy he attached to us," the boy’s mother said.

For the mother, her whole world was almost stripped from her fingertips by a stranger in seconds. 

She asked FOX 4 not to show her face or use her name, but her message is clear. 

"You never thought it could happen to you until it actually does," she said.

Kevin Ward is in the Tarrant County Jail on a felony charge of unlawful restraint of a child.

North Richland Hills police said the 31-year-old slipped into the school on August 9 during "Meet the Teacher Night."

RELATED: Attempted kidnapping at 'Meet the Teacher Night' in North Richland Hills stopped by parent


The alert mother noticed Ward walking the halls by himself. 

"We were turning around and looking around and he was on our heels, my heels. Staying behind me the whole time," she recalled.

After Ward followed the family for a few minutes, the mother said her husband motioned to a nearby map and stepped away.

That’s when she said Ward made his move with her son right by her side. 

"He walked up and put his arm over my son’s shoulder and guided him down to the corner, and I grabbed my son’s collar and pulled him," she said. "And the man still tried, and then I yelled and told him to let go of my son and let go of my child."

The mother said Ward took off outside. 

So her husband did the same, making sure Ward didn’t get away while on the phone with 911. 

"I told the principal he’s wearing a light blue shirt, he’s easy to spot," she said.

Police took Ward into custody at the school. 

International Leadership of Texas told FOX 4 in a statement: "While it was not acceptable that this individual was able to enter our building, we are incredibly proud of the way our team and families responded to keep students safe."

International Leadership of Texas North Richland Hills

The police department thanked the mom for her quick thinking. 

"I’ve been able to not think about it all week and then it will hit me like a ton of rocks," the mother said.

But that split second decision is leaving behind a lingering worry with her son starting school. 

"I don’t want him to be afraid and terrified to go to school and have this trauma hanging over him," she said.

Police said Ward had no connection to the school.