Local News

Cumberland Co. Parents Warned to Watch Children

Posted October 20, 1997 12:00 a.m. EDT

— A warning has gone out to parents in Cumberland county from the schools. Middle and high school students took flyers home Monday, in reference to last week's attack on a teenage girl.

Students heading home from Westover High School carried the unusual note in their bookbags. It was addressed to their parents and referred to an incident involving one of their classmates.

On Thursday morning, a 15-year-old was walking to a school bus stop on Tollhouse Drive, when a man forced her into his car. He drove to a wooded area behind Benjamin Martin Elementary School and tried to molest her. The girl escaped and later helped police draw up a sketch of the suspect, who could be responsible for up to a dozen attacks over the last two years.

Student Celina Guerra says she is scared and plans to stay safe.

The school flyer suggests that students, especially girls, be observant, walk in groups, and stay away from suspicious vehicles.

Celina's mother Carmen Guerra says she thinks the flyer was a good idea.

Parent James Thomas agrees and says he plans precautions for his daughter.

Police and school officials say they are not trying to overly alarm anyone, but they do want people to be alert and safe. They also want to catch the suspect, and police are working on plans to distribute copies of the sketch to thousands of homes across the city.