Milford Police: People in Suspicious Vehicles Attempting to Soli - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Milford Police: People in Suspicious Vehicles Attempting to Solicit Children

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Two similar vans that were identified by the victims. (Photo: Milford Police) Two similar vans that were identified by the victims. (Photo: Milford Police)

MILFORD, Del.- Police are investigating suspicious vehicles in Milford after receiving three reports of people trying to solicit young children from them.

Milford police said the first incident happened on Jan. 27, while a child was waiting for the bus at a home on Staytonville Road in Lincoln. The child told police a white, unshaven man, possibly in his 40s, with brown hair and a black coat approached, asking the student if he/she "needed a driver." The child said the man's car was a white minivan similar to a 2003 Ford Windstar, which matched the description given by two other students at bus stops nearby. That incident is being handled by Delaware State Police.

The second incident happened on Jan. 30 in the Milford Commons shopping center off Route 113, according to police. Officers said a white man in his 30s, driving what may have been an older model white Dodge Caravan, tried to a lure a child who was sitting alone in a vehicle into his van.

Then shortly after 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 9, police said a child was getting off the bus in the area of Lakeview Avenue and Hall Place when a tan, older model Ford Windstar pulled up. According to officers, a white woman was driving, and there was another white woman in the passenger seat. Police said they asked the child to meet them down the road by the old Milford Middle School. A witness reported seeing the van stop for the women to talk to the child and then slowly drive away. That same witness told police the van had an out-of-state, possibly Maryland registration.

School Resource Officer Sgt. Robert Masten said that the situation was a frightening one for parents. 

"I can't fathom why anyone would want to harm children," he said. It doesn't make sense why people would direct any energy toward that. Unfortunately it's a reality and it becomes our job to ensure it doesn't happen again."

Thursday morning Tiffany Delauder was walking with her son outside of the Mispillion Elementary School. She said that her reaction is to reiterate to her son the importance of not getting into cars with strangers. 

"I just do everything I can to try and make him aware," she said. "Of what to watch out for. And that’s a shame. He’s only nine years old. And I feel at nine years old, he shouldn't have to have those concerns."

Kathy Dee said she has grandchildren from schools in Milford, and that she was angered by the incidents. 

"It's terrible," she said. "And I think it’s disgusting. And I think what is the world coming to?  These are our precious kids. Our next generation. Please - let them grow up.” 

All three suspect vehicles look similar in color and body style, police said, with the exception of the victims reporting different makes and models.

Anybody who sees vehicles that match the descriptions or anything that looks suspicious is asked to report it to the Milford Police Department or any agency where these vehicles may be spotted. Tips can also be submitted to (302) 422-8081 or to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-TIP-3333. 

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