The Regina Police Service is advising the public of two recent incidents involving an adult male conversing with high-school age teen girls and asking questions considered somewhat suspicious. The first incident occurred on Monday, May 9, 2016 and, by itself, was noted for informational purposes. There was a second, similar encounter reported to police today, prompting the Regina Police Service to remind parents that now is a good time to reinforce safety plans with their school-age children, even teens. At this stage, no crime has occurred, but police wanted to make the public aware, as a precaution.
The first incident occurred on Monday, May 9, 2016, in the area of McDougall Crescent and Grant Road. A 15 year-old girl was at a bus stop when a vehicle stopped and the male driver engaged the girl in conversation, asking repeatedly if he could drive her to school. The second incident happened on Thursday, May 12, 2016, near Wesley Road and Grant Road and involved a (different) 15 year-old girl, who was walking toward a bus stop. The circumstances are similar: a male in a car stopped and asked the girl several questions, including repeated invitations to accept a ride to school. It’s believed the male in both incidents is the same person. Both incidents happened between 7:50 and 8:00 a.m. The suspect is described as: a black male, between 20’s and early 30’s in age, little or no facial hair, no piercings or tattoos, no glasses, mostly bald, wearing a buttoned shirt, and polite but persistent. The male was driving a medium, silver car (no further description provided by the girls); there was no licence plate obtained. The male did not get out of the car and did not attempt to touch either girl. In each case, the girls reported to an adult and then to police.
The Regina Police Service is reminding parents that discussing/reviewing safety plans with children is important, not just during the school year. The teens in these incidents did nothing wrong, but here are some suggestions parents may want to consider for discussion with their own children:
– Be aware of surroundings and take note of anything or anyone that looks suspicious;
– If you are listening to music on headphones or earbuds, cover only one ear so you can still hear traffic, people, dogs and any other potential hazard;
– Don’t approach a vehicle, if you do not know the person inside;
– Don’t engage in conversation with someone you don’t know;
– If possible, have a friend walk with you; this is a particularly good strategy for younger children;
– Have a route that uses sidewalks, instead of alleys or paths through parks;
– Get a description of anyone who behaves suspiciously;
– If possible get a description of any vehicle involved, including a license plate;
– Report promptly to a teacher, police officer or other trusted adult.
Anyone who may have information that could assist in the investigation into these incidents is asked to contact the Regina Police Service at 306-777-6500 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.