HAWTHORNE N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Parents are keeping a close eye on their children in many northern New Jersey communities after a series of attempted abductions targeting children.
Someone has been trying to lure children into a car and the incidents have parents worried. The latest incident happened earlier Monday when two more children were nearly kidnapped, CBS 2’s Hazel Sanchez reported.
Police continue to question a man in the incident, which happened in Lyndhurst. Police said a man tried to use video games to lure two boys into his van on Valley Brook Avenue. It is the fifth luring incident in just two weeks.
On Friday, another luring attempt took place in Hawthorne right next to a lit-up ball field packed with parents and children.
Police said a man tried to abduct a 13-year-old girl. The suspect grabbed the girl on a pathway then dragged her all the way to a foot bridge as a game was going on nearby.
“She was able to break free and then started screaming and stuff. That’s when everyone on the field heard that and started going that way. Unfortunately, he got away,” Chris Greig told CBS 2’s Christine Sloan on Monday.
The girl couldn’t give police a good description of the suspect, but there have been attempted child luring incidents in three other towns.
In Hackensack, police said a man asked an 11-year-old boy to get into his white Jeep Wrangler on Friday morning. The boy refused and the man drove off.
In Maywood, police said a man tried to kidnap a girl right in front of her home last week. She was smart enough to run to her older sister.
“The man approached an 8-year-old girl who was on street and invited her to go look at his puppies,” Maywood Police Chief David Pegg said.
Oradell also had a similar incident last week.
While the sketches in Hackensack and Maywood look very different, police said they are not ruling out a disguise.
“There was meeting going on this morning with detectives from all various agencies to try compile facts of case see what similarities,” Pegg said.
“My son he has a lot of friends. When they leave school they generally walk together,” Hawthorne parent Robert Medwick said.
Hackensack police said they have a good lead on their suspect.
Other towns are getting tips. Investigators want to crack the cases before Halloween when children are more vulnerable.
Police are warning parents not to let their kids walk alone and to teach children what to do if a stranger approaches them.
Are you taking extra precautions as a result of these incidents? Let us know in the comments section below…