Police are warning residents in Chicago’s Town Hall neighborhood to be on alert after an elderly man attempted to lure a child from a schoolyard.
During recess Thursday afternoon, April 12 at Alexander Graham Bell Elementary School, 3730 N. Oakley Ave., a man walking along the fence of the schoolyard approached a 10-year-old child. The offender made hand gestures and motioned for the child to come closer.
As the child approached, the offender reached through the wrought iron fence, touched the child on the shoulder and incoherently spoke to the youth. The child ran away and informed school personnel of the incident, which took place at 2:15 p.m. Thursday.
Police believe the subject may have mental health issues and possibly be suffering from early dementia.
The offender was described as an Asian or possibly Hispanic man, 60-70 years old, wearing a tan baseball cap, tan jacket, blue jeans and black shoes.
Police offered the following tips to tell children to prevent kidnappings:
- Call 911 to report any suspicious people or activity.
- Don’t talk to strangers or approach strange vehicles.
- Walk in pairs.
- Be aware of your surroundings.
- Travel in well-lit and populated areas.
- Never pursue a fleeing assailant. Provide information about the individual to police.
- Remember any unique characteristics about the offender (scars, limp, acne, teeth, etc.)
- Pay special attention to suspicious people loitering in an area and report them to police.
Anyone with information about the offender in the Bell School incident should call the Chicago Police Department’s Area North Bureau of Detectives at 312-744-8261. Anonymous tips can be submitted at tipsoft.com.
—- Police: Man attempted to take child from Chicago schoolyard —