Village of Marlborough ~ 314.962.5055
Police Emergency 911 Police Non-Emergency 636-529-8210
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PARENT'S GUIDE TO PREVENTING CHILD ABDUCTION
Strangers are not always evil looking!
Child molesters and abductors usually look like everyday people. Tell your kids not to talk to adults they do not know. Anytime they are approached by an adult they should check with a parent or trusted adult immediately.
How child molesters and abductors gain a child's confidence ~
Oftentimes they will befriend a child by asking for help. Some examples are:
Asking directions to someone's house
Offering a reward for assistance
Saying Mom or Dad have been hurt and need their help
Acting like an undercover police officer (children should only approach uniformed police officers and / or marked police cars).
They may also gain your child's trust by very minor contacts over several days, such as saying hello to them repeatedly. Make sure your children know to tell you if a stranger is trying to make friends with them.
Children are most vulnerable when alone ~
Individuals who prey on children wait for an opportunity when the child is alone. Children should not be outside their home by themselves, even for short periods of time. They should walk to and from school and bus stops in groups.
Working together with other families in your neighborhood to develop a formal plan for kids to walk together is a good idea. Parents are encouraged to join a Neighborhood Watch program
Tell children to stay away from cars ~
A car or other vehicle is often the means by which the abductor removes the child from the neighborhood. Children should never approach a vehicle unless they are absolutely sure they know the occupants. Abductors will entice children to walk near their vehicles and then pull them inside.
If children routinely see the same car parked (or following them) on their normal walking routes, they should report it to authorities immediately.
Role play with your kids ~
Act like a stranger and see how your children react. Teach them the proper way to respond. Kids should:
Say exactly what is happening. Like
"HELP, this is not my Dad / Mom!"
" HELP, I'm being kidnapped!"
"HELP, call the POLICE!"
If children just scream, people may think they are only throwing a temper tantrum. The more you practice, the better your children will be at responding to difficult situations.
Report any suspicious activity immediately ~
Talk to your children about safety practices on a daily basis. Children do not put the same emphasis on suspicious activity as adults. Asking them direct questions, such as "Did you talk to anyone new today?" may bring unusual acts to light. If they describe anything which makes you feel uncomfortable, call 9 1 1 immediately.
Tips for reporting suspicious activity ~
Obtain the following information and report immediately:
Plate number and state
Color of vehicle
Body style (2 door, 4 door, station wagon)
Location and direction of travel
Description of occupants
Clothing (hat, jacket, shirt, pants, shoes)
Facial features (hair color, hair length, mustache, beard, glasses, scars, missing teeth)
Location and direction of travel
IMMEDIATELY REPORT SUSPICIOUS ACTIVITY
DIAL 9 1 1