LONGMEADOW, Mass. (WGGB) — Longmeadow Police are looking for the public’s help in trying to identify a suspicious man seen in town Wednesday night.
Captain John Stankiewicz says a 16-year-old girl was walking home on Frank Smith Road Wednesday night around 9PM.
That’s when a white or cream-colored oversized van pulled up with an unknown man behind the wheel.
“He asked her where she was going,” Captain Stankiewicz said. “She said she was walking home and again he her asked her ‘he’ll give her a ride’ and then he asked her to get in the van.”
The girl said she ran to a nearby friend’s house for safety, but after posting information of this incident on the department’s Facebook page, Stankiewicz notes that police got more reports involving a similar looking van.
One person saw a similar man around at 7:30 p.m. watching lacrosse at Glenbrook Middle School. A third person described a “disheveled and creepy” man at Big Y around 4:00 p.m.
Patti Vecchiarella has a granddaughter in town and finds the reports disturbing. “It’s very distressing to think something like that could or would happen,” she said.
All three reported sightings were within a mile and a half of each other in the same five hour period. Police say whether you’re walking home or with people in a public place, this week’s reported incidents are a good reminder to be careful.
“Be a little vigilant,” Stankiewicz said. “Not to be scared, but just to be aware of your surroundings.”
“It something that should be addressed both at home, and definitely in the schools to let children know that that is a possibility and that they should never get in any type of vehicle unless it is somebody that they know and that they know is supposed to pick them up,” Vecchiarella said.
Longmeadow Police are still investigating. They say the white or creme van may have a Texas license plate. Police want to question the man and need help identifying him.
If you have any information or might have seen any one acting suspiciously, call Longmeadow Police they can be reached at 413-567-3311.