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Suspicious Van Investigated Near Plymouth School

Plymouth Elementary school staff notified police of a suspicious van lingering outside the school Friday morning and detectives located and interviewed the driver.

Detectives interviewed the driver of a van parked near after school staff became alarmed and contacted police about a possible attempted kidnapping.

Monrovia Police Lt. Nels Ortlund said no attempted kidnapping ever took place and the driver of the van never communicated with an 11-year-old girl seen near the van at about 7:40 a.m. Friday.

"There was a suspicious circumstance of a van stopped at a corner," Ortlund said. "There was no verbal communication from the driver of the van, only a suspicious circumstance. There was no attempted kidnapping of any kind."

Police contacted the driver, who had the sliding door of his van open at the time the incident occurred. The driver told police that the van's door was broken.

"They had what was deemed to be an explanation, I wouldn’t say whether it was reasonable or unreasonable," Ortlund said. "We’re not taking his explanation as either credible or not credible but we are looking into who he is and his history."

The man was not arrested and Ortlund stressed that "there is no threat to the public."

A parent of a Plymouth student told Patch that the district sent out a robo-call about the incident to parents. Principal Suzanne Heck could not immediately be reached for comment on this story.

David D May 14, 2012 at 08:00 PM
To my knowledge the officers do not choose where they go, they are asisgned so I am not "beating up" on them. The powers that be are choosing to assign them to write traffic tickets over protecting our kids that is the issue. I drop my kids off at Bradoaks and pick them up everyday and drive right by Monroe elementary after leaving them, and in three years have seen police maybe twice and that was for traffic enforcement only. SO next time you "see" an officer at the school hey take a pick from your golf cart and post it.
david heimark May 15, 2012 at 01:55 PM
Sad society we live in where everyone is a bogeyman. How about maybe the person was a hard working gardener who found a place to legally park, have his bite to eat, rest a moment and get back at it? How about maybe it was an outside salesman who wanted to check his email, return a call or two, have a bite, collect themself before hitting the bricks some more? From the tenor of this thread it's pretty clear nowadays in America one is guilty until proven innocent. As for traffic, the worst drivers in this city are the helicoptering soccer moms racing about tending their gawdawfully important chores. Brake service shops must love those morons.
ian June 16, 2012 at 12:09 AM
A "van stopped at a corner"........"no attempted kidnapping of any kind"....... Clearly this man is a witch. He must be burned at the stake immediately. For the children.
Robert Parry June 16, 2012 at 01:20 AM
The whole neighborhood watch concept is based on knowing neighborhoods and recognizing things that are out fo the ordinary. This is exactly what happened here. Life is full of tradeoffs. I'd rather the police stop and chat with an innocent man for two minutes rather than have pedophiles feel they can openly stalk their prey without fear of interference. In your prioritization, it is perfectly acceptable for the worst imagineable things could happen to children, so long as no innocenet is inconvenienced. I really cannot fathom how someone could be so callous.
Jack June 16, 2012 at 04:00 AM
Yeah, screw that "civil rights" BS. Those Founding Fathers were callous bastards who hated children. The government should be allowed to detain and interrogate anyone for any reason at any time..... Some black men sell drugs, so it should be acceptable to detain all black men for suspicion of selling drugs. It's just a mild inconvenience. And after all, it's for the children.

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