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Jefferson County Deputies Increase Patrols At Harriman Lake Park After Attempted Child Abductions

JEFFERSON COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4) - Deputies in Jefferson County who are working to prevent any possibility of child abductions have increased foot traffic at Harriman Lake Park after what appears to have been a close call. It was one of two incidents last week in the Friendly Hills neighborhood involving attempted kidnappings or child enticement.

Friendly Hills neighborhood incidents
(credit: CBS)

A 9-year-old girl was grabbed while walking on the Weaver Gulch Trail at the park last Tuesday. That's in unincorporated Jefferson County not far from the intersection of Quincy Avenue and Kipling Street. The male ran away when the girl screamed. He was described as being 5-foot-9 with a medium build.

"A man approached her, said hello to her, she said 'Hi' back, and then the man grabbed her by the arm. (The) girl screamed, and thankfully he ran off," Jeffco Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Jenny Fulton.

The suspect was wearing a black pullover hoodie, black bandanna with a white design, dark jeans with a hole in the right knee and dark sunglasses.

harriman lake park
(credit: CBS)

A visitor to the park on Sunday told CBS4 she is heartbroken to hear about the situation.

"It just upsets me to know that somebody would go out and harm children -- try and take children, it's so wrong," said Phyllis.

The other incident took place three days later about a mile away. A car approached two siblings who were walking on the 11900 block of West Temple Drive when a car stopped in front of them and a man tried to give the kids a "Skip It" toy.

"Thankfully their father was outside as well. He saw this happen, and as he started to approach the man and his children, the man got back in his car and left the area," Fulton said.

Children Suspicious Encounter 1 (stock photo of Skip It toy, from JCSO)
A stock photo of a "Skip It" toy. (credit: Jefferson County Sheriff's Office)

The boy's father and another witness provided a description of the man: A white male possibly in his 30s with a medium build and dark facial hair, wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt and jeans, and wearing a baseball cap. The man's car was described as a gold sedan.

Deputies have also increased patrols in that area.

Investigators aren't sure if the two incidents are related.

Anyone with information about either incident is asked to call JeffCo dispatch's non-emergency number, (303) 271-0211, or Metro Denver Crime Stoppers, (720) 913-7867.

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