Princeton RCMP are warning parents and their children to be vigilant after two young boys were offered a ride from a stranger early Friday evening.
A man attempted to lure the youngsters into his vehicle by offering them candy and a puppy, according to Sergeant Barry Kennedy.
The incident occurred on Mayne Street, on the third bench, at about 4:50 p.m.
At the same time Kennedy is cautioning concerned residents – who learned quickly about the incident through social media – to not harass men they suspect of being the culprit.
“We don’t want the public to overreact to this. We need something to link the suspect to the scene and having the same car is not a link. It’s something we can follow up on.”
Kennedy said the boys, who are eight-years-old, “declined the ride and they each ran to their separate homes. The police have interviewed both boys who provided the same story and the same version of events.”
The suspect is described as an Asian male, with dark hair, between the ages of 25 and 30.
The suspect vehicle is a white four-door hatch back, which may have a roof rack.
Kennedy said the boys told credible stories and their manners were straightforward.
However since the incident numerous people have insisted to police they can identify the suspicious driver.
“Now people are going around taking pictures of white cars with Chinese people in them. This is what we don’t want to set off,” he said.
“We are following up on all the leads but at this time we don’t have a suspect…You have to be very careful that you are not wrongfully accusing innocent people based on the fact that they drive a white car.”
Kennedy said it is possible the man was passing through town and is not a resident.
“Everybody is on edge and being highly vigilant but I don’t expect anyone to take matters into their own hands,” said Kennedy.
“With Facebook and social media stuff gets our there before we even have a chance to confirm what happened…There’s a lot of information being passed around and some of it’s credible and some of it’s not. We really need to weed through all that.”
He said it’s important for parents to talk to their kids about safety.
“It seems like both these kids knew what their stranger protocol was, to say ‘no’ and to go either home or to a safe place. It’s good that these kids received that kind of instruction and did what they are supposed to do.”