The Scottsbluff Police Department is investigating a report of a woman trying to lure two children into an alley by their home.
Today the Scottsbluff School District released that a parent reported the incident, which occurred near 8th Avenue and 15th Street. The parent said a woman in an older, gold van stopped in front of their home and a woman got out.
Scottsbluff Police Captain Brian Wasson says the female approached children in the area asking if they wanted to play with another child in the backyard of another home nearby. Wasson says the female used the name of a child that the children knew who used to live at the home- but had moved with his family to another location.
The children said they refused the females invitation and went home immediately. The female reportedly left the area soon after in van; which had a broken handle on the passenger side, tinted windows, and possibly a broken headlight.
Wasson says the children provided enough information as to whom this other child was and his father was contacted. The father confirmed that he has a son with the name provided by the female and that they had recently moved to Gering- but had no idea who the female in this gold van could be.
The Scottsbluff Police Department is continuing their investigation.
Superintendent of Schools Rick Myles says there are many resources available to help children be more aware of their personal safety. He says some commonly delivered messages to help children be prepared are always helpful.
He adds that with pro‐active rules that will help keep them safe, delivered in a comfortable manner, the process doesn’t have to be scary.
Examples of such messages include:
- Never accept a ride without first getting permission from parents
- Never take food, candy, or any other gifts from a stranger
- Do not go take a look at something a stranger wants to show you
- Don’t even pet a stranger’s animal, if you are invited to pet it
- You are a kid. An adult stranger should not ask you for help. If a stranger asks you for help, get away from him as fast as possible
- If anyone ever makes you uncomfortable in any way, tell your parent or another trusted adult immediately
- If a stranger tries to take you, yell “No!” and fight as hard as you can to get loose. Run to a public place and keep running until you find an adult who can help you
- When you are in a public place, always stay with your parents. Never wander off by yourself.
- Walk to and from school in groups.
- Never take shortcuts. Always stick to routes selected by parents, and stay on main roads
- Memorize your address and parents’ phone numbers
- Have “home alone” plans for emergencies, and for phone and door answering
- Be aware of “safe havens” along walking routes which represent the “right” strangers from which to seek help in immediate danger
- Never leave school with anyone without checking with school officials
In the letter, Superintendent Myles says the District will continue to keep parents informed should there be any further developments. He concludes they will remain vigilant at all of our schools and continue to share information such as this throughout our area schools and the media.