UPDATED: Further description details on van occupants offering 11-year-old Fruitvale girl a ride.
Police have not yet located the two van occupants who pulled ap alongside a young girl on her way to school in Fruitvale yesterday, according to Trail top cop Sgt. Mike Wicentowich, but they did get a more detailed description for which residents can watch.
“We obtained these further details from the 11 year old student:
– The van had black roof racks on top (like the kind to hold a ladder);
– There was no writing on the van;
– The male was in his late 30s or early 40s, wore a blue baseball hat, glasses, and freckles;
– The female had a blue baseball hat and glasses, around the same age as the male, with dirty blond hair.”
“We ask parents to speak to their children about general safety protocol when walking to school and what to do if approached by strangers,” he added. “We advise children walk in groups and look out for each other. Parents can escort kids to school as an added precaution.”
Hesaid any parents wanting more information/direction on discussing the issue with their kids are welcome to make use of reference material at teh RCMP detachment.
“The most important thing is to report the any incidents such as the one that occurred yesterday to a responsible adult and have them contact the police immediately. We will attend the area of the incident and conduct an investigation.”
Again, anyone with information is asked to call Trail RCMP at 250-364-2566.
Police are asking for public information after a young girl was approached and offered a ride on her way to school in Fruitvale yesterday, according to Trail top cop RCMP Sgt. Mike Wicentowich.
He said an 11-year-old girl was walking along Mill Road yesterday when a white van with tinted windows pulled up alongside her.
“There were two occupants, a female driver and a male passenger,” Wicentowich said, adding one of the two offered the girl a ride. “She declined.”
Upon arriving at school, the girl told some of her friends, but didn’t tell an adult until arriving home that evening. Her uncle was taking care of her, and Wicentowich said that, upon hearing her account, the uncle advised her to write down everything she remembered and contacted police.
“We were notified at roughly 6:30 p.m.,” Wicentowich said.
He said police had two plainclothes officers in the area this morning, and are actively seeking the people in the van to determine their intent in approaching the girl.
“Our primary goal is to find out who they are and what their motivation was, if it was innocent,” he said, adding it could’ve been simply a friend of the family whom the young girl didn’t recognize.
“At this time, we don’t know why she was offered a ride. I’m sure, because Fruitvale is such a small town, that somebody knows somebody with a white van with tinted windows, and we’ll follow up with them.”
He lauded the uncle’s direction in having the girl write down what she remembered, and advises people do that in any situation that makes them uneasy.
“It’s not, right now, a criminal matter – but taking some preliminary notes can be very helpful if it becomes important.”
Anyone recognizing the description of the van is asked to call RCMP at 250-364-2566.