Garbage Collectors Notice Vehicle From Amber Alert, Save 10-Year-Old Girl

(Photo by JEFF PACHOUD/AFP via Getty Images)

Kyle Heckman Contributor
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Two trash collectors for Pelican Waste and Debris in New Iberia, Louisiana are being commended as heroes after saving a 10-year-old girl who was kidnapped the day before, according to ABC13.

Dion Merrick and his co-worker, Brandon Antoine, were on their normal route Monday morning when Merrick noticed a vehicle in a field that matched the on described in an Amber Alert they had received earlier, ABC13 reported.

“Something told me, ‘Just look.’ I said ‘What’s that car doing way ducked off in in the field like that?”’ Merrick told the outlet.

Merrick started to livestream the car on Facebook as he called the police, according to KATC.

“I called 911 at the same time, backed my [garbage] truck up in the driveway to make sure he didn’t get out,” Merrick said. “I talked to the 911 operator and she basically told me it would be about a minute before a deputy was going to be on the scene.” (RELATED: Man Who Impersonated Officer And Kidnapped Two Girls Arrested, Police Say)

The video captured by Merrick shows 33-year-old suspect, Michael Sereal, being taken into custody by police, according to ABC10. While he is being escorted by police, you can hear Sereal say, “Why are you doing this to me?”

Both Merrick and Antoine are fathers. Merrick can be heard on the livestream saying, “Thank God, man, because I got a little girl. I’m on my job doing what I got to do.”

The 10-year-old girl, Jalisa Lasalle, went missing around 1 or 2 p.m. Sunday from a family member’s home. She is now safe thank to Merrick and Antoine.

The CEO of Pelican, Roddie Matherne, commended the two for their actions in a statement given to ABC News.

“We couldn’t be prouder of Dion and Brandon. In fact, All of our Pelican Waste team have been heroically working without fail during the pandemic quietly, professionally, and consistently serving the communities where we collect garbage & debris. They often respond in other ways while on the road. This was an exceptional thing that may very well have saved a little girl’s [life].”