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Police investigate suspicious incident with East Lyme student

December 8, 2018

East Lyme — Police said they are speaking with a man who reportedly drove up and approached a middle school student in the Giants Neck section of town at Edgehill Road, making the student “uncomfortable.”

School Superintendent Jeffrey R. Newton informed parents of the situation in an email Friday afternoon.

The student was approached by an older white male in a gray mini-van. “The male driver verbally interacted with the student making him uncomfortable, and the student reported the situation immediately to school personnel upon his arrival at school. District Security, East Lyme Police, and the bus company were all notified,” Newton wrote.

The East Lyme Police Department identified the vehicle and the individual who approached the student and he was brought to the police station, the email said.

Police declined to release any further information and said the investigation was ongoing.

Newton, in his notice to parents, said, “your child’s safety is of utmost importance. Our partnership together between home, school, and the East Lyme Police will continue to be a crucial component in avoiding unsafe situations.”

“Additionally, maintaining open dialogue and ongoing communication is essential. I want to thank our police department, school administration, and our school security staff for their swift action and collaborative work together in what took place today,” he said.

Newton said the event was an opportunity to review safety measures with students:

• Use a cellphone to immediately call or text 911 as necessary

• Never get into a vehicle or go with an unfamiliar person

• Remain a safe distance from all vehicles

• If questions are asked of your child, they should be encouraged to seek an adult immediately

• Do not verbally interact with people that your child is uncomfortable/unfamiliar with

• Develop a potential “safe word” that you and your child agree upon regarding pickups or rides

• Use your cellphone as a tool to videotape or photograph any suspicious person or car

• Have an escape plan or safe area in your neighborhood to go to

• Pay attention to details such as bumper stickers, items in a car, distinguishing features of a car or person as these are all helpful in keeping your child safe

Parents and students are encouraged to practice these plans whenever possible.

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