Police Investigating Report of Child Being Offered Ride by Strangers

Staff Writer

Chief Seth C. DiSanto reports that the Newport Police Department is actively investigating after a child reported a suspicious interaction she had while walking to school yesterday morning.
At approximately 4:30 p.m., a Newport Police Detective responded to a report that a child had interacted with a suspicious individual while en route to school.
Upon arrival, the detective conducted a preliminary investigation and learned that an elementary school aged girl was waiting to cross the street at the intersection of East Main Street and Western Avenue when she was allegedly offered a ride by a passenger in a van stopped at the intersection.
The child refused and the van subsequently drove away. She then reported the encounter to a family member upon arriving home from school later Thursday afternoon.
Newport Police are actively investigating the incident, which is believed to have occurred between 7:30 and 7:50 a.m. The van is described as being dark blue in color and having a boxy shape and missing rear windows. The driver of the van is described as having long blond hair and was wearing glasses with an orange tint.
Information about the van and its suspected driver has been shared with the Orleans County Sheriff’s Office and Vermont State Police.
“This young woman did exactly the right thing by refusing to take a ride from a stranger and then reporting the incident to an adult,” Chief DiSanto said. “We are working with our law enforcement partners to investigate this interaction and identify potential suspects.”

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