Suspicious man in van asking children if they need rides

police logoby Quinn Lewicki

Two local police departments in the area are trying to find out more about two incidents that happened early last week. In both Wrentham and North Attleboro, officers learned about an individual that asked two separate children if they needed a ride. The subject has said to be driving a blue work vehicle, and is said to be in his 50s with a gray beard.

The incident in Wrentham occurred the afternoon of Monday, September 24th at approximately 2:30 p.m., when the man asked a child if he needed a ride from the school bus stop. After asking the child, the subject drove away. The Sun Chronicle reported that Wrentham Police Chief Bill McGrath said, “he never got out of the van.”

Chief McGrath said that it is not right for children to be approached by a stranger and asked if they need a ride.

The very next day, a similar incident was reported in North Attleboro, and in response, police officers were posted at all town elementary schools the next afternoon. Equivalent measures were followed in Wrentham after their incident on Monday afternoon.

In addition to posting police officers, a student safety message was sent out to parents of students at North Attleboro Public Schools Wednesday afternoon from Assistant Superintendent McEwen, noting the situation and that the staff at North Attleboro elementary schools will be going over safety for students who walk home.

One parent of an elementary school aged child in North Attleboro, Roxanne Lewicki, said she didn’t feel good when she received the message, adding, “I was worried for my child.”

Parents were also asked to speak to their children about safety rules while walking to and from school.

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