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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Two Wilmington teenagers are in some big trouble after investigators say they tried to abduct a child heading home from school.

The walk home from school quickly turned into a nightmare for one boy that the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office says had to hide in the woods until he felt it was safe enough to go home.

“I don’t allow her to walk home by herself, because I’m afraid she’s going to one get kidnapped, or two she’s gonna get picked on,” said Amber Bishop, who’s daughter goes to Pine Valley Elementary, the same school where the alleged 10-year-old victim goes.

Deputies arrested Mark Sewell, 18, and Jaquelyn Martin, 16, for trying to abduct him after the boy told his dad they asked him where he lived, what his name was, and if he wanted candy.

Parents we spoke with say regardless of their age, the teenagers were up to no good.

“In my book, bullying and everything else like that is zero tolerance,” Bishop said.

“I’m not only a parent, but I’m also an employee, and I know all my kids that go here,” Latricia Starks said. “I just have a big problem with the kids not feeling safe about walking to or from school.”

Other parents say they don’t let their kids walk home because you never know what could happen.

“There’s so much that goes on in the community nowadays, and I would prefer them walking in a group opposed to walking by themselves,” Starks said.

Parents say they had not heard about the incident yet from the school.

Sewell’s mother called our newsroom today and said disclosing the information about her son and the incident was unnecessary. When we asked if the family would like to share their side of the story, she said they would do it in court.


Comment on this Story

  • Guest 1

    I have known Mark’s mother and father for over 10 years. This comment is a joke. I find it awfully funny how you can assume that because two teenagers are stuck between a media trying to convict and a DA up for election, that their parents are horrible. Have we forgotten the Durham DA for taking things way to far, he is in jail. I think New Hanover County once again has shown how to blow something completely out of proportion and hope their pockets are deep. They have been sued and lost for numerous lacks of judgement and this will be no different. Have we forgotten the Strickland kid that was blown away for a possible stolen Playstation and they lost that one. I hope Mark’s name is cleared and his future unscathed.

  • dlg

    There is always that one that has to throw the race card in there. Maybe so many people are commenting on these kids because they are good kids. Did you stop to think about that before you start blaming the nice comments on race? Ignorance is bliss.

  • dlg

    Well said. I know Marks Dad very well and he is a great parent and person. The 10 year boy said Mark didn’t say anything to him only the girl. Maybe the 10 years boys parents need to be investgated because they son is so scary. See how stupid did that sound. Also as stupid as your comment.

  • dlg

    NO he didn’t run into the woods and hide. You people are psyco. He went home and got his parents who got the tag number off the car they were in. The 10 year said the boy never said anything to him. It was only the girl. That’s why I can’t stand WWAY. Half truths all the time. They are like the local YAHOO.com or TMZ

  • dlg

    You must be as stupid as the DA in new hanover county which by the way is up for election. He is the one that brought the charges again these 2 kids. The detective and the father of the 10 year old didn’t want to press charges but said it was up to the DA. Just for the record, a 10 year will lie. What plant are you from??

  • Josh Stephenson

    Thatta boy REECE!

  • Guest555666999

    Two Angels, I think not. The young man was already on probation. With all the cases of child abduction, bullying, and drugs these days this can’t be brushed under the rug. If this is how these two young adults, which they consider themselves to be, get their thrills it as an indication of underlying issues which need to be addressed. If the 16 year old girl had been the younger child who was teased and taunted, I’m sure her parents would want some action.
    Hopefully the court will not be too lenient on these two. Otherwise, they will feel they got away with it, which is what they must be accustomed to. Accountability is crucial in the case.
    At best, these two can get the help they need. They do not seem to understand the basics of right and wrong.
    What might they have done if the child had walked up to the car? Continue with the teasing? Thankfully the little one knew to get away from them.

  • Guest9743

    You can call it the race card or whatever but there is some validity in what “NOT Disgusted” said. With that said….you might think you know these kids and you might even think you know their parents but you weren’t there when this happened so you really don’t know what their real intentions were, do you??

  • Guest3939339

    Im good friends with Crystal and Mark both and they would NEVER in a million yeas try or want to do this to someone. for people to even accuse them of doing this blows my mind and I bet you everyone else feels the same if you ask them. If you are going to arrest them you should just arrest every other teenager in Wilmington. Every teenager jokes and messes around at some point. mark and Crystal both are really funny people who like to joke and everyone loves being around them as a couple. they might have been joking around at the wrong place at the wrong time but this is crazy for anyone to blame them for something this dumb

  • 1496272Guest

    Seriously you really think these kids are trying to take a 10 year old? Its sad how stupid the cops in Wilmington have got now days. I know Crystal and shes a really sweet beautiful girl who would never try to intentionally hurt anyone! This has been blown way out of proportion… Give these young kids a break why would you want to mess up their whole lives..

  • Dude

    Preach it brotha. Let everyone know bout it!!!!!!!!

  • Unknown

    Its legal in North Carolina to release information at 16

  • Guest Apu

    You really think they released their entire case to the media? I seriously doubt it. The prosecutors won’t even give all the evidence to the defense attorneys until a discovery motion is filed. But in this day and age of trial by media, everyone thinks they know what should happen based on a media report.

  • Guest11991

    These are just some kids messing around. They were not actually trying to take this kid. If they were why would they try to do it 2 minutes from their house. They would have gotten out of the car and actually got him in the car or even stopped the car. They didnt even stop the car to try to get him in!! They kept going and went about their business. They didnt have any thing in the car that looked like they wanted to take him either. This is a case taken a little too far.. You know in court this will be dropped so everyone should stop freaking out and acting like these are bad kids…

  • Guest59877

    I know Crystal and Mark and these are two really good kids. If you ask anyone they know they would say they are not the kind of people to go and try to take a 10 year old kid. They are kids themselves!! They obviously were joking around but it just got taken a little too far. All teenagers joke and mess around what do you expect. These are NOT real criminals.. That little boy will be 16 in 6 years and his dad will be dealing with him making mistakes. We all do at some point. Think about how this stupid charge is going to mess up their lives at so young. Think about how their family feels and how the media twists around everything. Go out and get real criminals because these two come from REALLY great families with good hearts. They didnt intentionally mean to hurt the kid. You would have to be stupid to not realize that.

  • Guest123

    Some of you call this 16 and 18 year old paid KIDS> well, 18 years old is the age a person is tried as an adult when they break the law. They are not little children, the 10 yr old is a child. Everyone has heard the common things kidnappers use to lure children. the candy for you, puppy etc just the things these kids used trying to lure this 10 yr old to their car.
    It’s not a joke! The child was so scared he ran into the woods to get away from them and hide until it was SAFE to come out.
    It is great his parents taught him to tell when someone tries to harm him. Good job to his parents!
    The rest of you STOP trying to make excuses for this teenage duo. What they did was wrong and it did not come from a “good place” inside them.
    That’s one of the things wrong these days, people making excuses for others bad behavour and covering wrong doings up. stop being enablers.
    these two need punishment and then psychological help.

  • Guest61246

    Let’s focus on what was done. I don’t think any law was broken by 2 teenagers talking to a 10 year-old kid walking along the street. They didn’t point a gun at him, nor did they try to force him into the car. What is illegal about this? Obviously, when he ran away, they went about their business. That does not show very much intent to do harm to anyone. What a bunch of total idiots some people and all of law enforcemtnt has become.

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday

    Regardless of their motive or intent, I sure hope there is some significant event or evidence not mentioned in this story to support a charge of “attempted abduction.”

    Which one of them grabbed the kid or tried to coerce the kid into the car?

    Simply TALKING to a kid, however creepy, hardly constitutes an attempted abduction, and does not rise to the level of 14-2.5 of the NCGS. This may be more of an attempt to put the fear of God into them than an actual planned prosecution, because the worst lawyer in the state could get these kids off. They may have scared the kid, but nothing they did meets the legal definition of an attempted abduction.

    I’d just advise them to stop wasting their time. If they’re going to take it upon themselves to correct every boneheaded pedestrian or crappy driver in this town, they’ll have no time for school, jobs, or any other activity.

  • friend

    i am a close friend of both defendants and i know for a fact that what they did is actually not a crime. They talked to a younger human being, no physical or verbal connection to taking the child was ever communicated. No crime was intended and they didnt even has candy. Since you think this is such a big deal go talk mark and crystal and meet them. Maybe have lunch with them and see had hard criminals they really are… yeha i didnt think so.

  • Guest5550

    Two Angels, I think not. The young man was already on probation. Young adults, which they consider themselves to be, should know better than to mess around with a young child. There seems to be an issue on the part of these two to understand the basic concept of right and wrong. If scaring a 10 year old is how they get their thrills this indicates they have some underlying issues that desperately need to be addressed.
    With all the concerns in regards to child abduction, drugs, and bullying this is no laughing matter. Call it as you please, but it was WRONG. If the young lady involved had been the 10 year old victim you can bet her parents would want justice. A child should be safe to walk home from a neighborhood school.
    The court needs not to be lenient with this incident. These two need to learn a real lesson from this. If they don’t they’ll just see it as fun and games blown out of proportion, and another thing they get away with. The blame will be taken away from them and put on everyone and everything else, which seems to be an issue with the them already. Accountability for ones actions needs to be acknowledged with this incident. Who knows what may have happened it the child had got into the car. Thank goodness they teach “Stranger Danger” in schools, and the frightened child was quick enough to hide till they left. Hopefully these two will get the help they need from all of this.

  • Guest12345

    Based on your inability to spell correctly, I’m going to go ahead and discount everything you say as false and idiotic.

    Also, congratulations on some stellar victim-blaming! So if a 10 year old kid IS abducted or IS assaulted, we shouldn’t believe him/her based on what you, kid genius, think? OK.

  • Guest44

    I know Marks father and you could not finder a more attentive, loving Dad. This action does not fit the Mark that I have come to know through his father over the years. Something is amiss here and some part of the story is not being communicated properly.
    Just as in the Trayvon Martin case, people with no connection to the event are rushing to judgement without knowing all the facts. Decent people would refrain from committing trial by media and let law enforcement do it’s job. We have enough uncivilized commentary in the world today. Let the families of these kids sort it out with the authorities before something becomes irreversible.
    thank you.

  • Grand Ole Party

    In eleven states, including Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, South Carolina, and Texas, a “juvenile” is legally defined as a person under seventeen. In three states, Connecticut, New York, and North Carolina, “juvenile” refers to a person under sixteen.[1] In other states a juvenile is legally defined as a person under eighteen.

  • NOT Disgusted

    What on earth is wrong with you?

    I don’t care how fresh-faced and “innocent” these two look – what they did is WRONG and, at the very least, bizarre and questionable criminal behavior. And you want to let them off the hook because you can vouch for the parents? Disgusting.

    I absolutely shudder to think what would have happened to the pair of criminals if they had been non-white or older. Absolutely no one would be commenting and blaming the young child in those scenarios. Get your heads on straight, Wilmington; a crime is a crime.

  • Reese


  • lol

    This is stupid. Both of these kids go to my school and i am not good friends with them but i know they are good kids. There is no way they were going to actually try to abduct someone.

  • OMG

    I have read all of these posts and all I can say are there are some clueless people in this town. OMG. First of all, ALL 10 year olds embellish the truth. Second of all, these two teenagers, like most teenagers, have mush for brains. It does not take a genius to figure this one out. The teenagers were being stupid, harassing a little kid. I really don’t think they meant him any harm. But probably saying some really stupid stuff. This kid was scared I am sure but I bet he, probably with the help of his parents, have blown this way out of proportion. These charges will be dropped or severely reduced in a few days. They will be charged with intimidation or something like it. Which is what they deserve. They need to learn a hard lesson. Some of the people who have posted here who think these kids are kidnappers, I have some really nice swamp land in Brunswick County that I will sell you at a realy good price LOL

  • Marcus

    The only law that is being broken here is showing the mugshot of a minor without their consent.

  • Ashley

    I am actually friends with Mark and it is completely out if character for him to do something of thia severity. He is an intelligent teenager and this was obviously not his best moment. Who knows the truth aside from the teenagers and the elementary boy? If you weren’t there you need to watch what you say. Everybody makes mistakes.

  • Outsider Looking in

    Fact 1. The news always blows things out of proportion to get people to watch or read the “breaking stories”.
    Fact 2. There’s always 2 sides to every story.
    Fact 3. If this were my child, I would be VERY concerned, upset, and want justice. I don’t blame the childs parents one bit. There is no excuse for this, even if it was just a harmless prank. I feel for these parents and would be upset too.
    Fact 3. I really don’t believe that these 2 kids really meant any harm,(thank God) but this was a VERY serious mistake and they need to know and learn by this, unfortunatly. We learn by our mistakes. It was VERY WRONG and if guilty, they do need to learn that in this day and age, this is NOT exceptable. I feel for these parents also.
    In this case, I would thank God it was not a true abduction, or bulling, like you see so often now in this terrible world that we live in. (what ever happened to the days we would go play until dark with the neighborhood kids? Our parents never heard nor worried about such things???
    They need to learn a lesson,and learn from their unthinking mistakes, but not as severe if it was a true motive orientated abduction.
    It’s very sad, and unfortunate, but thank God, the little one is OK!

  • Our World Today

    Would you be saying the same words if this was your child who was confronted………… BET NOT!!!

  • Guesthug

    I hope the parents are investigated for any prior incidents of abuse. These two are NOT children at 16 and 18. This is a learned behavior and thankfully the child that escaped did the right thing. If it was a prank, it was a seriously stupid one.

  • SW

    Misunderstanding? Really? What part of a 16 year old and an 18 year old yelling at a 10 year old to get in a car that doesn’t belong to his/her parents, and then WAITING for the 10 year old to run back out of the woods where he/she ran for safety don’t you understand!! Making excuses for these teenagers behavior is what is truly disgusting and what seems to be wrong with parenting today!

  • OhWell

    Bonnie and Clyde were also considered to be “good kids” by their family and friends.

  • Guest910

    LMAO they go to my school…i will deff be laughing at them when i see them !

  • disgusted

    I’ll tell you what is disgusting…how people react to stories from the media without caring to know anything. You do not know these kids! You do not know what happened. You do not know how these charges came about. Offering to throw the books at them…what have you done in your life? These are children as well who have a ton to offer the world in a positive way. For you to even say that shows what a reasonable person you are.Their parents? Well, I can fend for one that they are wonderful parents who live their lives right. This was a stupid situation that got blown into something completely untrue. These kids were in no way, shape, or form trying to kidnap a kid! Everybody is always very quick to make their comments and judgements without knowing much at all. It is disgusting the way people are. These are both good kids! For people to think for even a moment that they were going to kidnap a child?!?! makes me think you need to be brought to the doctor before they do. Dumb things happen, but charging these kids with such a ridiculous charge is outrageous! I wish the police would get real criminals off the streets instead of trying to ruin these kids lives when it was obvious that it was a huge misunderstanding. I feel extremely sorry for them having to deal with this horrible situation.

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