Police seek tips on luring suspect, offer advice on keeping kids safe

SMOKEY POINT Arlington police are still soliciting leads from the community, concerning the attempted luring of two 11-year-old females in Smokey Point Dec. 5, while providing both parents and children advice on how to protect themselves from predators.

  • Thursday, August 28, 2008 11:41am
  • News

Police sketch of the unidentified male suspected of attempting to lure two 11-year-old females in Smokey Point Dec. 5.

SMOKEY POINT Arlington police are still soliciting leads from the community, concerning the attempted luring of two 11-year-old females in Smokey Point Dec. 5, while providing both parents and children advice on how to protect themselves from predators.
At approximately 4 p.m. Dec. 5, at the McDonalds located at 3539 172nd St NE in Smokey Point, an unidentified male offered to transport the two girls in his vehicle several times, while in the parking lot of the business, and then followed them for approximately two to three blocks, before parking and continuing to watch them walk toward home.
According to police reports, witnesses described the suspect as a white, heavyset male with gray hair and hazel eyes, wearing a blue-and-black plaid shirt, a tan jacket and tan pants, while driving a newer Toyota pickup, gold-colored with a silver toolbox in its bed.
Arlington Police Detective Peter Barrett acknowledged that police are continuing to work the leads they have so far, while also requesting any information that anyone might have about either the suspect or his vehicle, but he added that parents and kids alike can make themselves safer from stranger danger staying aware and exercising caution.
Not all strangers are bad, of course, but the problem is that we cant always tell who is or isnt, because predators are very good at cloaking their true intentions, Barrett said. They come from all ages and demographics, and can target boys and girls of any age.
Barrett explained that Parents should clarify for their children which adults are okay and which ones are strangers, so that they can further instruct their children not to go with those strangers, nor to accept anything from them, whether it be food, money or rides.
Predators use tactics, so you should discuss hypothetical situations with your kids, Barrett said. If someone comes up to your kids, asking them to help find a lost puppy, they should go to an adult that they trust, and unless youve already told them about it, your kids should never go with anyone who says theyre there to bring them home.
Barrett counseled children who are confronted by strangers to start by saying no to those strangers advances, and then to yell no as loudly as they can, if the strangers dont leave them alone, since unwanted attention can lower the childrens risk. If the strangers still persist, Barrett urged children to run away to a safe place, such as the home of an adult whos okay, a public business with many people, or a police station or fire department.
Their main goal should be to get away, but once they do, they need to tell an adult, and that adult needs to call 9-1-1, Barrett said. Kids are usually pretty aware.
Barrett emphasized that parents should also be aware of where their children are, and who theyre with, by employing measures such as setting curfews, communicating with other childrens parents, and requiring check-in updates when theyre out, either by having the children carry cell phones, or by giving them money to make phone calls.
Kids should go out with other kids, Barrett said. They run a higher risk when theyre alone, because then, they cant use the buddy system to watch out for each other.
Barrett elaborated that parents involvement with their children should extend to knowing what their children are up to on the Internet, since Im working a couple of cases right now, where kids have been lured and groomed online, and while its a bit different than someone driving up to them on the street, its in the same realm. It can be as bad or even scarier, because we have this sense of feeling protected, secure and untouchable on the Internet, but you never know for sure whos on the other end of the line.
Barrett implored parents to check up on their childrens online whereabouts, and especially to educate themselves about sites such as MySpace, where kids can put a lot of personal information out there, and expose themselves to a lot of risks in the process.
The Arlington Police Department tip line is 360-403-3420.

More in News

Inslee: Stay home for 2 weeks

By Jerry Cornfield and Zachariah Bryan The Herald OLYMPIA — Gov. Jay… Continue reading

Fences have been put up around Marysville playgrounds to keep kids off. (Steve Powell/Staff Photos)
Marysville leaders concerned as (almost) everything’s closing

By Steve Powell spowell@marysvilleglobe.com MARYSVILLE – Within hours of Gov. Jay Inslee’s… Continue reading

Briefly

Beware of coronavirus scams SEATTLE – U.S. Attorney Brian T. Moran is… Continue reading

Jennifer Thompson, left, and her father Ron Thompson secure a new remembrance plaque to the Oso slide site gate on Sunday, near Oso. Ron Thompson handcrafts a new plaque for the gate every year. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Community remembers Oso slide victims, survivors

By Ben Watanabe The Herald OSO — The power of remembering the… Continue reading

People gather to pick up special allergy meals before leaving Lakewood High School on Wednesday in Marysville. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Districts taking meals to students since schools are closed

By Stephanie Davey The Herald LAKEWOOD — Children wearing pajamas stood outside… Continue reading

Jon Nehring
Letter about coronavirus from Marysville Mayor Jon Nehring

This is an edited version of a letter Marysville Mayor Jon Nehring… Continue reading

DOUGLAS BUell/Staff Photos
                                Lead cook Keina Gowins with Presidents Elementary hands out free grab-and-go breakfasts and lunches to students and parents outside the school Wednesday. Presidents and AHS serve as central kitchen sites for preparing meals, which starting next week will expand to 12 delivery sites from Silvana to Oso. Right, Arlington Food Bank executive director Carla Gastineau and Mike Simpson, food bank board president and owner of Arlington Grocery Outlet, partnered with the district with their Meals Til Monday program, and gave a woman a box of donated food while at Presidents.
Arlington students won’t go hungry during the COVID-19 school closures

ARLINGTON – Arlington schools are closed through April 24 to help fight… Continue reading

Scott Beebe hands out Chromebooks to people in their cars. (Steve Powell/Staff Photos)
Marysville parents anxious to pick up school materials for kids

By Steve Powell spowell@marysvilleglobe.com MARYSVILLE – A few days ago Marysville schools… Continue reading

Jon Nehring
Marysville leaders’ trip to D.C. productive

MARYSVILLE – City leaders recently obtained advice on how to get more… Continue reading

Crews will blow garbage into the street and sweep it up over the next few weeks. The city is asking people to move their cars, trash cans and recycle bins when they come around to help them do a thorough job. (Courtesy Photo)
Marysville shuffles workers due to virus, seeks public’s help for sweepers next week

By Steve Powell spowell@marysvilleglobe. MARYSVILLE – From working from home to teleconferencing… Continue reading

Arlington closed until April 24 amid COVID-19 outbreak: what’s next?

ARLINGTON – When Arlington public school leaders met for a special meeting… Continue reading