The Edmonton Police Service is seeking the public’s assistance in an alleged abduction attempt of a 10-year-old female that occurred in west Edmonton last week, and would like to speak to another young female who may have also been approached.
“When concerns such as these are brought to our attention, we need to ensure we exhaust all leads,” says Det. Billy Countryman with EPS West Division. “We need to know what this other potential witness may have seen or heard. Every piece of information, no matter how seemingly insignificant it may seem at the time, can aid in this investigation.”
Police detectives are investigating the suspicious circumstances that were first reported to police on March 16, 2016. It was reported to police that a 10-year-old girl was walking to school at approximately 8:45 a.m. when she was called over by the driver of a light-coloured van with its hazard lights activated. The van was parked along 97A Avenue, west of 182 Street. The driver, described only as a dark-haired man, allegedly offered the girl candy, but she wisely continued to school where she reported the incident to staff.
Through interviews, police learned that the male suspect may have approached another young female student around the same time. Police want to speak to this other potential witness who was observed walking eastbound on 97A Avenue towards 182 Street. The other female is described as being 12-to-16 years old, with dark hair (may have been Asian), possibly wearing dark clothing with jean jacket, and carrying binders and a backpack.
“We have canvassed the neighbourhood and area schools to locate this unknown potential witness,” says Det. Countryman. “We have been unable to locate this person based on the clothing description. With changes in the weather, we believe she may not be wearing the same jacket that she wore last week. It was also suggested that she may have been walking toward a bus stop along 182 Street. With the various transit routes students take each morning, this female may attend a school elsewhere in the city.”
Police encourage anyone who may have information regarding this incident to contact the EPS at 780-423-4567 or #377 from a mobile phone. Anonymous information can also be submitted to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or online at www.tipsubmit.com/start.htm.