Police in Chautauqua County arrest man who violated probation, attempted to kidnap teenager at Walmart

MAYVILLE, N.Y. (WIVB) – Police in Chautaqua County say they have found 38-year-old Samuel Saeli. He’s accused of kidnapping a 13-year-old boy from a Walmart parking lot in Fredonia.

Saeli was arraigned on charges Monday. The Village of Fredonia court set bail at $10 thousand dollars and he was released. Now, the Chautauqua County District Attorney is saying ‘not so fast’ — he wants him behind bars.

The Acting District Attorney, Patrick Swanson is not happy with how the Village of Fredonia court handled this arrest.

The District Attorney’s Office didn’t learn of Saeli’s capture and arraignment until yesterday morning. It is protocol for the court to notify the office in order to set bail. That’s not what happened here.

Swanson says his bail recommendation would have been significantly higher. At least $100 thousand dollars instead of the $10 thousand dollars Saeli posted. Swanson says Saeli was on probation for a forgery offense out of Erie County.

He says he forged a teacher’s certificate to try to get a job at an area school. The District Attorney says Saeli violated that probation and a new warrant was put out for his arrest.

Saeli was arraigned again, this time for violating his parole. Afterwards, he was jailed in Chautauqua County on no bail.

Swanson said, “I expect to be called by my local court Judges. That was overlooked. By the court in this particular instance. This defendant is a felon he’s looking at a minimum of 8 years in prison if convicted of this. So it’s an offense that’s very serious. There’s a very simple solution to all of this. And it just would have required a phone call to my office to ensure that we were heard on bail.”

Police say the child who was abducted on Sunday has a form of autism. Swanson says he’s worried Saeli took advantage of that. It’s something he would have taken into account when setting bail.

Saeli is expected to reappear in County Court on Monday.

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