Wednesday, April 4, 2012

School kids keeping up their guard

I walk for an hour three mornings a week, wearing a ballcap, windbreaker, shorts and sneakers, and I'm usually in a good mood.
So I nod and smile to some folks I pass and say good morning to others.
School kids?
Different deal.
I usually keep my mouth shut as I pass them by.
What brings it to mind is the report Bradenton Police were seeking a man who reportedly approached a 9-year-old girl walking to her bus stop Wednesday morning and asked if she needed a ride.
Bad news.
The man was described as being 35 to 55 with medium hair, a goatee and driving an older, boxy four-door vehicle, according to police.
Given similar incidents around here in the past, parents are cautioned to make sure their children know of the dangers of unknown people approaching them while they are on their way to school.
If approached, children should notify a school official or law enforcement immediately.
Think that message has gotten through with children from the subdivisions neighboring mine.
If I'm walking north and a child is heading south on the same sidewalk toward the nearby school bus stop, there is no eye contact.
Same thing if the child is riding a bike to school.
No smile.
No greeting.
I don't blame them for keeping up their guard.
It's just sad it's come to that.

PS: Anyone with information about Wednesday's incident should call Detective Michael Page at 941-932-9314 or Crime Stoppers at 1-866-634-TIPS.

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