Detective James Sloan wouldn't make a promise he couldn't keep.
That's what he and Northwest Police Division Inspector James Kelly stressed Thursday afternoon when the team of detectives and officers from Northwest Detectives gathered to talk about the recovery of Carlesha Freeland-Gaither.
"I won't say something if I don't believe it," Sloan, a 22-year veteran, said. He said Carlesha's mother, Keisha Gaither, didn't seem to believe him when he first told her he'd bring her daughter home safe.
"When I first said it, no, but when she looked me in the eye" she did, the detective said.
Sloan and his partner of 17 years, Detective John Geliebter, a 21-year veteran, along with a team of others from the division, had worked tirelessly on the case since Carlesha was violently abducted from Greene and Coulter streets about 9:30 Sunday night, Kelly said.
All of the veteran law-enforcement officers involved in the case said they hadn't seen anything like the chilling abduction before in their careers.
Sloan also credited Carlesha, saying that police believe she dropped her cellphone on purpose when her captor attacked her so that police would have a clue.
"She's an intelligent girl," Sloan said.
Detectives also credited witness Dwayne Fletcher, who Sloan said called police and waited at the scene for them to arrive, with being instrumental in helping them to save Carlesha.
"He watched, he called police two times, he waited for me," Sloan said. "He's a hero."
Police said Carlesha is home recovering with her family.
Full list of all the detectives and officers who appeared during today's news conference:
Detective James Sloan
Detective John Geliebter
Detective Tim Hartman
Detective Brian Boos
Detective Adam McGuigan
Sgt. Paul Brown
Lt. Robert Otto
Lt. Cliff Lyghts
Capt. Jack Fleming (14th District commanding officer – district where the kidnapping happened)
Inspector James Kelly (Northwest Police Division inspector)