Man faces charge of attempted kidnapping of 15-year-old girl

WICHITA _ A 44-year-old Wichita man is facing a charge of attempted kidnapping involving a 15-year-old girl.

Raul Benitez made his first court appearance this afternoon before Sedgwick County District Judge Ben Burgess.

Prosecutors say Benitez tried to pull the girl into his vehicle on July 8.

Burgess ordered a preliminary hearing in two weeks. It will likely be continued to a later date. Benitez remained in the county jail in lieu of $50,000 bond.

Wichita police said the girl was walking home from a friend's house at about 7 p.m. that day, when a man drove up in a maroon Chevy Blazer in the 900 block of North St. Paul.

She said he circled the block a couple of times, repeatedly saying to her, "C'mon!" before trying to pull her inside the Blazer.

He then asked, "How old are you?" she told police.

When she told him she was 15, he reportedly said, "You're too young for me," and drove away. She called her father to report what happened, and he then called 911.

Responding officers spotted the Blazer three blocks away.

In court records, Benitez listed his residence in the 800 block of North Sheridan _ about a half mile away.