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Girls chased on their way to school



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October 13, 2010 - Residents in and around the Lake Villa Mobile Home Community on Lakeville Rd. in Oxford Twp. are being advised by the Oakland County Sheriff's Department to be on the lookout for a man who allegedly chased three young girls on their way to Oxford Middle School Thursday, Oct. 7.

The suspect was described as wearing a black hooded-sweatshirt and gloves. His estimated height was reported to be between 5-foot, 9 inches and 6 feet.

According to the sheriff's department, a woman living in the trailer park reported that her daughter was chased by a man as she walked to school.

The incident happened around 7 a.m.

The girl told police she was walking along Parker Lake, a street inside Lake Villa, where the road bends by the swamp when "a man with a hoody (sweatshirt) closed tightly around his face emerged from some bushes and walked towards her."

Frightened, the girl began to run to the middle school and the man ran after her, the report stated. She arrived at school unharmed.

When she arrived at school, a pair of sisters told her they were also chased that same morning.

The sisters told police they too were walking along Parker Lake when a man with hooded sweatshirt tightened across his face came out of the bushes and ran towards them.

The report indicated the girls ran toward a resident entering his car and the suspect stopped chasing them.

Extra police patrols are being conducted, according to Sheriff's Sgt. Scott Patterson.

"We're keeping an eye on the area," he said. "The main thing is trying to find this guy."

Patterson recommended parents escort their kids to school. If that's not possible, he recommended kids use the "buddy system" and walk with a friend.

If the suspect does approach you, Patterson advised kids to "make a lot of noise" and "try to get other parents and other people's attention."

"Draw as much attention to it as possible," the sergeant said. "I want them to do anything they can to alert somebody to call 9-1-1, so we can get to the scene before something bad happens like them getting dragged into a car."

If anyone sees anything suspicious, please immediately call the sheriff's department central dispatch at (248) 858-4911. If the situation appears to be an emergency, call 9-1-1.

"If they see something they feel is suspicious or out of line, call us," Patterson said. "What I always tell people is we can't do our job without their assistance. If you see something that doesn't sit well with you, call us. Tell us what you're seeing, where the person's at."

CJ Carnacchio is editor for The Oxford Leader. He lives in the Village of Oxford with his wife Connie and daughter Larissa. When he's not busy working on the newspaper, he enjoys cigars/pipes, Martinis/Scotch, hunting and fishing.
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