Classes at schools across the Houston area started this week and there has already been a report of a stranger possibly trying to kidnap a student.
According to the Humble Independent School District, a seventh-grader was approached two streets behind Eagle Springs Elementary, 12500 Will Clayton Parkway, after he got off a bus stop on Wednesday.
A man in a car rolled down his window and said, "Hey, get over here," to the boy, according to a letter sent home to parents.
The boy ran down the street and the man drove away.
The driver was described as Hispanic, in his 50s and tall. He was driving a four-door, dark gray small sedan, possibly a Honda Civic.
The school district said there have been other suspicious incidents near schools.
About 8 a.m. Thursday, a Houston police officer said a man, believed to be 18 to 20 years old, asked him for the location of the nearest elementary school. The officer said the man was acting suspicious. The school district increased patrols near Deerwood Elementary, 2920 Forest Garden, as a precaution. Nothing out of the ordinary occurred, officials said.
On Wednesday, letters were sent to students of Timberwood Middle School, 18450 Timber Forest, because a man was arrested within a block of one of the school's bus stops. A parent observed the man in inappropriate sexual conduct in public, the letter stated. The man did not approach any students, but he could have been seen by students.
"Child predators can be anywhere, so no community is really immune. It's really important for everyone to be knowledgeable about stranger danger," Humble ISD spokeswoman Jamie Mount said.
The school district offered tips to keep students safe between home and school.
- Walk to and from school in groups.
- If anything unusual occurs, tell an adult immediately. Parents and teachers need to know right away what happened.
- Never talk to strangers or accept rides from them.
- Don’t panic. If you are afraid or have a problem, call a parent or a trusted adult.
- Arrange for immediate access to neighbors and other trusted adults who could answer questions or be contacted in an emergency.
- Tour the neighborhood with your child to identify safe and dangerous circumstances and places.
- Never tell people at the door or phone callers that you are home alone. Say your parents are busy and offer to take a message.
- Keep your house key hidden. Don’t give it to anyone and don’t keep it in a visible place that would tell people you are going home to an empty house.
- Never get into a car, enter a home, look for a lost pet, and accept candy or toys from an adult, unless your parents know what you are doing and have given you their permission first.
- Tell a trusted adult – parent, teacher or counselor – if anyone ever makes you feel uncomfortable. When children are abused, it often is by someone they know and trust.