SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- The man accused of abducting a Springfield girl, prompting an Amber Alert, was arraigned in court on Thursday.

Miguel Rodriguez is primarily charged with kidnapping, assault with a dangerous weapon, and intimidation of a witness.

The 24-year-old pleaded not guilty and is being held without bail.

Though the arraignment was very short, the judge called specific attention to Rodriguez's mental health.

"I have some concerns about mental illness and mental health," the judge said in open court.

The judge in Springfield District Court noted a previous restraining order in Rodriguez's files. She ordered a mental health evaluation for the 24-year-old, who is accused of kidnapping 11-year-old Charlotte Moccia in Springfield Wednesday afternoon.

"In terms of characterization about what was involved in this, I'll leave for the court process," said Hampden County District Attorney Anthony Gulluni.

Gulluni was tight-lipped at a press conference after Rodriguez's not guilty plea. Because Rodriguez's records have been impounded, Gulluni declined to answer questions about the suspect's past. He also would not say whether or not there was evidence Rodriguez targeted Moccia specifically.

Gulluni said his focus now is keeping Rodriguez in custody.

"We're gonna work very hard to make sure that he does not see the light of day for a very long time," Gulluni added.

Rodriguez is being held without bail until a dangerousness hearing on January 22.

Those who live in Rodriguez's neighborhood tell Western Mass News it doesn't provide peace of mind.

"This is very scary for us you know, like to send your kids to the store. I won't be able to do that anymore," said a neighbor who did not want to be identified.

Initial reports indicated that the suspect vehicle may have been occupied by two people.

Springfield Police spokesperson Ryan Walsh said that detectives are no longer looking for any additional suspects in the case and that Rodriguez is the "one and only suspect."

Western Mass News will continue to follow this story and will have more information as it becomes 

Stay up-to-date with the latest news and weather.  Download the Western Mass News App

You can now get the latest Western Mass News headlines on Alexa.  Click here to activate the skill.

Subscribe to our YouTube channel

Copyright 2019 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation).  All rights reserved.

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.