CALCUTTA - A rumor going around the community, including on the social media site Facebook, concerning an attempted child abduction in St. Clair Township is just that: A rumor.
Township Police Chief Don Hyatt said Thursday night he had been fielding calls all day about the rumor, which began circulating earlier in the day that a man in a maroon or purple van had tried to lure two children into his vehicle, promising them candy and "good times."
"We don't have some serial child abductor running around in the township," he assured concerned parents.
He believes the rumor started from an incident Tuesday afternoon during which a maroon Durango pulled up to two children playing on Moore Avenue in the Oakmont district.
A white woman driver leaned over and opened the passenger side door and said, "Hey kids, come here a minute," twice but received no response from the children, who then left the area. The vehicle also left the area, Hyatt said.
He said the woman didn't try to entice the children into the vehicle, nor did she peel out as though trying to get away.
"Any story out there other than this is a complete falsehood. I've fielded all kinds of calls. It could have been as innocent as (her asking for directions)," Hyatt said.
No license plate number was obtained but Hyatt said he would like to locate the vehicle so he can clarify what the woman wanted from the children.
"We do not believe we have, nor are we on alert for, a child abductor," Hyatt emphasized.
Hyatt said he had spoken to a representative of the Mothers' Club yesterday with the correct information.
He stressed that anyone with further concerns or questions should contact him at the police station at 330-386-6496.