Vigilance after three children accosted

POLICE are increasing patrols and urging schools to be on their guard after three children were accosted by a man in a black 4x4.

John Howard

POLICE are increasing patrols and urging schools to be on their guard after three children were accosted by a man in a black 4x4.

The incident, which happened in Finborough Road, Stowmarket, saw the youngsters aged between 10 and 12 approached by a man who got out of the car near the cadet hut.

The three managed to run away, with one of them pushing the man away as he reached out for them at about 3pm on Monday.

Lisa Crane, a Suffolk Constabulary spokeswoman, said: “We are putting on additional patrols and officers are going into schools to give information to assemblies.

“We are speaking to headteachers and are taking this extremely seriously. We want our children to stay safe and if anyone sees anything suspicious, or vehicles outside school looking suspect, we want to hear about that.”

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At Stowmarket High School staff said they had been made aware of the incident by police officers and the headteacher and heads of departments had all been alerted.

A worried mother, who preferred not to be named, said: “It makes my blood run cold. To hear anything like this is truly shocking. But I do think the police and schools have acted exceedingly well to notify parents and children of the danger.”

Anne Whybrow, Stowmarket mayor and a county councillor, said: “No-one likes to think of this happening in their community. It could happen in any of our streets and we all need to be vigilant.”

The man is described as in his mid 40s, five feet eight inches tall, with a tanned complexion and short dark hair and was wearing a black jacket, jeans and white trainers.

Calls in relation to this incident should be made to Pc Oliver Walker at Stowmarket Police Station on 01473 613500 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.