Reporting John Lauritsen
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A possible kidnapping caught on tape at a Wal-Mart Sunday was “nothing more than an attempt at a prank,” the Forest Lake Police Department confirmed Monday afternoon.
On Sunday at 8:30 p.m., police responded to the Wal-Mart store, located at 200 12th St. SW, on the report of a possible kidnapping.
When they arrived, a witness told police that a female got out of the trunk of a car parked in front of the store, but was chased by a front seat passenger, who caught her and put her back in the trunk.
Then, on Monday at 2 p.m., police received a call from the mother of the four involved in the incident – all of whom are sisters – saying her daughters performed a prank while out in the front of the Wal-Mart store Sunday evening.
The mother eventually brought her daughters to police to show them their cell phone videos of the prank.
The girl in the trunk was 13 year old. Her three older sisters are all adults.
A couple of the older sisters live in North Carolina and Tennessee, and the car they were driving had Tennessee plates.
Police say they thought the video was suspicious from the start, but had to treat it as legitimate just in case.
“The Forest Lake Police Department takes the safety of the citizens as its highest priority, and took every step to ensure we had done all that we could to close this case with a successful ending,” Captain Greg Weiss said in a statement.
Police added that the department spent more than $7,000 to investigate the hoax, and they say it took them away from other serious duties.
Wal-Mart customer Jamie Lembke says that authorities should go easy on the sisters.
“If it’s their first time doing stuff like this I don’t think they should get too much for it being a prank,” Lembke said.
But customer Ari Carlson says the humor was most likely lost on most of the startled witnesses.
“There’s, I don’t know, sensitive people and like people who have been through the same stuff,” Carlson said. “When you see that, it’s not something you would take as a joke at all. The only people that probably found it funny was them.”
Captain Weiss said the family is from nearby Linwood, Minn., and they’re very remorseful.
He added that the sisters could face misdemeanor disorderly conduct charges
Watch The Surveillance Video Below