‘Law & Order: SVU’ Star Mariska Hargitay Celebrates Young Fan Who Used Show Tip to Fight Off Attacker

by Jacklyn Krol

Law & Order: SVU star Mariska Hargitay praised a young fan that used a tip from the show to fight off a kidnapper.

Hargitay said that an 11-year-old Florida native Alyssa is her No. 1 fan. The child fought off a man who was attempting to kidnap her at a bus stop. Home surveillance footage captured the entire incident. The man in a white vehicle approached her jumped out of his car to grab her.

“The man got out of his vehicle holding a knife, came towards me and I tried to run, but he caught me,” she recalled.

The suspect attempted to drag her to his van but she fought back and they both fell on the street. However, he soon gave up and drove away.

Luckily, Alyssa was making slime, with distinct blue paint earlier. She made sure that she got some of the slime on his arms as she knew it would help authorities identify him after watching episodes of the crime show with her mother.

“I knew that that might be better evidence if the cops do find him,” she told The Today Show. “I just feel proud of myself.”

Police caught the suspect, who had the slime on his arms. Furthermore, 30-year-old Jared Paul Stanga was charged with “attempted kidnapping of a child under 13 and aggravated assault and battery.” He is currently being held on a $1.5 million bond.

Mariska Hargitay’s Response

Mariska Hargitay shared an interview with Alyssa on her Instagram account and sang her praises.

“Alyssa, first and most important, I am so relieved and grateful to know that you are safe. And I am so honored to be part of your incredible story,” Hargitay began. ‘You are one BRAVE, Strong and Smart young woman. I think the SVU squad might have to add slime to their crimefighting gear!” Take good care of yourself and each other.”

Hargitay has often voiced her praise for survivors of crimes on social media. After all, her character Sgt. Olivia Benson is an iconic character who is known for believing victims. Moreover, Hargitay is also heavily involved in charitable works with sexual assault survivors, something that her character is also passionate about.

“What I am most grateful for is that I have been given a platform and a voice to speak about the things that are important to me,” she previously told Variety in 2018. “And a platform and a voice that have allowed me to contribute to bringing positive change into the world, and my goodness what a changed world this is since I started the show.”