Man holds knife to 7-year-old girl's throat, demands mom get in vehicle, Pittsfield Twp. police say

Melvin Francis Sroufe wanted by police

Melvin Francis Sroufe (WDIV)

PITTSFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. - A man held a knife to a 7-year-old girl's throat and threatened to kill her if her mother didn't get into her vehicle in Pittsfield Township, police said.

Officers from the Pittsfield Township Police Department were called at 1:42 p.m. Sunday to the 3800 block of Carpenter Road.

Police said Melvin Francis Sroufe, 57, of Washtenaw County, approached the 35-year-old woman and her daughter, both of Ypsilanti Township, as they were putting groceries in their car.

Sroufe grabbed the child and put a large knife to her throat, saying he would kill her if the mother didn't get into her vehicle, according to authorities.

Witnesses in the area addressed Sroufe verbally until the girl and her mother were able to flee without injury, police said. It's unclear exactly how witnesses got Sroufe to let go of the girl.

Sroufe took the woman's wallet from the shopping cart and fled on foot toward Ellsworth Road, police said.

Pittsfield Township police used a K-9 unit to recover evidence and identify Sroufe as the suspect, according to officials.

His whereabouts are unknown. Police are continuing to investigate.

Anyone with information on Sroufe's whereabouts is asked to call 911 or the Pittsfield Township Police Department at 734-822-4958.

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