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Mariska Hargitay says she's 'so relieved' after an 11-year-old used 'Law & Order: SVU' to help catch her attempted kidnapper

·3 min read
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  • Mariska Hargitay
    Mariska Hargitay
    American actress
captain olivia benson mariska hargitay
Mariska Hargitay plays Olivia Benson on "SVU." NBC/Getty Images
  • Mariska Hargitay spoke about an 11-year-old "Law & Order: SVU" fan that escaped an attempted kidnap.

  • The actress, who plays Olivia Benson, said she was "honored" to be part of Alyssa Bonal's story.

  • Hargitay also surprised Alyssa during her virtual interview on NBC's "Today."

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

"Law & Order: Special Victims Units" actress Mariska Hargitay spoke out last week about an 11-year-old girl that successfully fought off her alleged kidnapper.

The 57-year-old actress, who has played Captain Olivia Benson on the fictional crime show since 1999, wrote an Instagram message responding to the video of Alyssa Bonal freeing herself from an alleged abduction while waiting for the bus in Pensacola, Florida, last week.

Authorities were later able to catch the suspect, a 30-year-old man identified as Jared Paul Stanga, as a result of the blue slime Bonal smeared on his arm - a tactic she said she learned from her favorite TV show: "SVU."

"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. You are one BRAVE, Strong and Smart young woman," Hargitay wrote on Instagram while sharing an image of Bonal and her mother Amber's appearance from NBC's "Today."

She continued, "I think the 'SVU' squad might have to add slime to their crime fighting gear! Take good care of yourself and each other. With all my love, your number one fan, Mariska."

Hargitay also surprised Bonal during her interview on Friday's episode of "Today," telling the 11-year-old she was "so incredibly honored" to meet her.

"I just want to tell you how blown away me and all of my squad are - and I think the whole world right now - that you had the forethought and the wherewithal to do what you did and I am just blown away," the actress added.

Hargitay told Bonal that she autographed an "SVU" script for her. It says,"You are my hero."

Bonal responded that it was "amazing" to meet the actress, explaining that she "never thought" she'd have the opportunity to interact with a star from the show, which is on its 22nd season.

"I feel the same way," Hargitay replied.

Bonal told "Today" that she had been mixing homemade slime with blue paint at the time of the alleged abduction. The girl noted that she intentionally tried to get some of the slime on her alleged abductor.

"I knew that that might be better evidence if the cops do find him," she said.

Stanga was arrested the day of the attack and was charged with attempted kidnapping of a child under 13, aggravated assault with a weapon, and simple battery, according to Escambia County Sheriff Chip Simmons.

Stanga's attorney, Robert Dees, had no comment when reached by Insider.

"I cannot help to think that this could have ended very differently," Simmons said at a news conference following Stanga's arrest, according to The Washington Post. "Had this 11-year-old victim not thought to fight and to fight and to just never give up, then this could have ended terribly."

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