Two likely unrelated abduction attempts have prompted the Renton Police Department to remind parents to talk to their children. Both incidents happened at school bus stops, one in North Kennydale and the other near Gene Memorial Coulon Park Beach.
On Jan. 8, a nine-year-old girl was returning home from school after getting off the bus. As the vehicle drove away, an adult man wearing an optic yellow jacket and reflective pants grabbed the girl’s backpack and pulled her backwards.
The man let go when she screamed, and he drove off in a gray or silver late-model compact sedan. The girl then told her parents what happened, who then reported it to Renton police.
A couple weeks later, another abduction attempt happened, this time with a 10-year-old boy near Coulon. The boy was walking up a driveway to his apartment complex, when a middle-aged man got out of the passenger side of a black truck. He told the boy he was supposed to pick him up because his mom wasn’t available.
When the boy said no and walked away, the man unsuccessfully attempted to grab him. The child then ran, back towards the school bus.
The events appear unrelated based on the differences in the reports, police stated in a press release.
While police investigate, they say both incidents are concerning and recommend that guardians talk to children regularly about personal safety guidelines.
Possible safety measures include:
- Arrange for the child to walk with a buddy
- Teach them not to approach strangers
- Coach them to scream if anyone does anything threatening
- Create a “safety code” trusted adults can use to pick up the child in an emergency
Anyone with information on either of these incidents is asked to contact Det. Robert Onishi at 425-430-7529 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Reference case 20-208 for the Jan. 8 incident, and 20-927 for the Jan. 23 incident.