Officials Offer Advice As Reports of Attempted Kidnappings Escalate

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People have turned to social media, saying that someone is trying to kidnap children at the Ohio Valley Plaza, and that it’s being hushed up.

Sheriff Dave Lucas says there are no attempted kidnappings, and there’s certainly no cover-up.

Sheriff Lucas says it all stems from two separate incidents that he wishes had been reported to him back when they happened.

On June 9th, a mother called in, reporting an odd incident from the night before, outside Kroger in the Ohio Valley Plaza. The mother said that her child was approached at the Kroger’s, where a male offered the child some gum. The mother reportedly grabbed the child and went on.

She said the man had dirty blond hair, a scruffy beard, and appeared to have a passenger in his four-door vehicle. 

Then another woman, seeing it on social media, said she and her child had a similar experience a month earlier outside Lowe’s.

“This other mother calls in and says hey, we had a female this time approach me and my child at Lowe’s and offered him some candy to which she again grabbed, got her child and left,” said Sheriff Lucas.

In this case, there was reportedly a man in the background.

Sheriff Dave Lucas says with so much time elapsed, they have nothing to go on. He urges people who see something to call it in at the time.

“I mean the ideal thing, we get a 911 call, we get out there immediately, we ID, they point ’em out and say that’s her or that’s him. We’ll ID ’em, we’ll take it from there,” Lucas said.

He emphasizes that no one reportedly grabbed or touched the child in either case, and that they offered gum to one, and candy to the other.

In both cases, the mothers rushed them away from the stranger and left.

The sheriff says a timely call to 911 may have solved it, instead of leaving lingering questions.

“The parent, the guardian, whatever, give us a call right then and there, and let us check it out. You know we can’t speculate, we’ve gotta go with facts. And unless we’re there and check it out, we don’t know,” Lucas said.

The sheriff says he can’t speculate about what the offer of gum and candy was all about, or whether the two incidents were related.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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