Police are appealing for public assistance after a child was approached by a man in the Maitland region yesterday.
At about 8.55am yesterday, a five-year-old girl was nearing the gates of her school on Bolwarra Road, Bolwarra when a man offered her a chocolate.
She declined and ran away, later reporting the incident to a teacher.
Police from Central Hunter Local Area Command are investigating the incident, and would like to speak to a man who may be able to assist with their inquiries.
He is described as being of large build, about 175cm tall, with short hair, facial stubble and sores on his forehead and arms. At the time, he was wearing a brown jacket and shorts.
Anyone with any information regarding this incident or who may know the identity of the man is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
Meanwhile, the incident has prompted police to again encourage parents to reinforce the ‘Safe People, Safe Places’ messages with their children, including:
- Make sure your parents or another adult you know knows where you are at all times.
- Always walk straight home or to the place you are walking to. Walk near busier roads and streets, or use paths where there are lots of other people.
- Know where safe places are – a shop, service station, police station, library or school. If you are ever frightened, you should go to one of these places and ask them to call the police.
- Learn about safe adults you can look for and talk to if you need help – police officers, teachers at school, adults you know and trust.
- Don’t talk to people you don’t know and never get into a car with someone you don’t know. If a car stops on the side of the road and you don’t know the person inside, do not stop.
- If you are scared and can use a phone, call 000 and tell them you are scared.
- If someone tries to grab you, yell out, ‘Go away, I don’t know you’. This lets other people know you have been approached by someone you don’t know.