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Deputies give all-clear after child luring scare

Posted at 7:01 PM, Nov 01, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-01 19:03:16-04

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. — Charlotte County Sheriff's Office said a man accused of luring a child into his car was mentally challenged and did not commit a crime.

Deputies said the victim told them she knew something was wrong when the suspect started getting angry when she wouldn’t get into his car. that’s when she ran to the charlotte county homeless coalition for help.

The sheriff’s incident report says the victim was walking to Murdock Middle School Tuesday morning when a man driving a maroon jeep liberty told her to hop in near Kinesaw Street and Castlerock Lane.

Skip Conroy with CCSO said deputies located the SUV Friday afternoon.

“This young lady obviously did the right thing. She ran from the scene,” said Conroy.

He said deputies learned the suspect is mentally challenged and made a poor choice by asking the child if she needed a ride. But, he said he did not do anything illegal. Conroy said he still urges parents to talk to their kids about safety before they return to school on Monday.

“Be aware of what’s going on. Pay attention to your surroundings,” he said.

Rodney Williams said he’s concerned to hear about the alleged luring. He said the same thing happened to his son eight years ago in the same neighborhood.

“My sons came in the house and said a guy tried to get them to go to the corner to help him find his dog,” he said.

Williams said even though his son made it home safe back then, and so did the victim this week, a higher law enforcement presence could prevent more scares like this.

“As far as even having police officers on the corner when school starts, school hours, you know what I mean? But right now, it’s basically watch your kids,” he said.

CCSO said there’s no cause for concern in the area regarding this incident.