Vancouver Police are investigating the actions of a suspicious man after he approached two girls in Captain Cook Park near Doman Street and East 54th Avenue.
Shortly before 9:00 a.m. on April 10th, the nine year old girls were walking through the park to James Cook Elementary School when the man approached them. The girls were frightened off and ran to a safe place.
The man was described as white, 40 to 45 years old, 6′ tall, with a medium build and a full beard.
The exact intentions of this man are not known, and police are issuing the advisory out of an abundance of caution. No arrests have been made and investigators will be looking into any other similar reported incidents in an attempt to identify this person.
Police are reminding people to call 9-1-1 immediately to report anyone suspicious and are asking parents to remind their children about what to do if approached by someone they do not know.
If anyone has information regarding this incident, please contact the Vancouver Police at (604) 717-0604 or Crime Stoppers at 1 (800) 222-8477.
- teach your children that a stranger is anyone they don’t know, and that even someone who is friendly is a stranger; if a stranger touches them or tries to take them somewhere against their will, they should scream, kick, and yell – this applies to people they know, as well, as it is more common for children to be victimized by someone they know than a stranger
- discuss safety regularly with your children, so they are comfortable with these issues, and know what to do; you want to educate, not scare them
- it is important to talk to your children without scaring them, or live in fear of people and society; remember that most people are good
- do not write your child’s name on the outside of clothing or bags; this would allow a stranger to know your child’s name
- teach your child how and when to dial 9-1-1; your child should also know his or her home address, phone number, and cellular number
- if your child finds themselves in a dangerous situation, tell them they should yell for help (“This is not my mom / dad!”) and run to a store or to the house of someone they trust; make sure your child knows never to run into a lonely, dark, or uninhabited area
- teach them to never walk or bike alone, day or night – use a buddy system; if they need to use a public restroom, never let them go in alone
- use the “after dark rule” – when the sun goes down, they come inside
- if they are approached by a stranger, on foot or in a car, they should keep their distance, and run away if necessary; teach your child which houses in your neighbourhood are safe, and where they can go in case of an emergency
- teach them to be aware of their surroundings, and if they notice someone following them, they should cross the street, and head for a crowded area, or a house that they know is safe
- always tell them, or a family member where you will be, and how you can be reached
- teach them to avoid alleys, poorly lit and lonely or deserted streets
- know with whom your child keeps company and what they are up to
Find more safety tips here.