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Calgary police release picture of vehicle reportedly involved in attempted kidnapping

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Calgary police have released a picture of a van they believe was driven by the suspect in the attempted abduction of a 13-year-old girl on Friday. Jackie Wilson reports – Mar 7, 2021

Calgary police have released a photo and more information about a suspicious vehicle reportedly involved in an attempted kidnapping on Friday.

Investigators released an image of a white 2005 to 2010 Honda Odyssey on Saturday in hopes of identifying and finding the driver.

Read more: Calgary police investigating attempted abduction of 13-year-old girl

On March 5 at 12:45 p.m., a 13-year-old girl was walking home from the bus stop, heading north along Saddlebrook Drive N.E. on the west side of the road, when she was approached by a vehicle.

Calgary police released this photo of a white van believed to be involved in an attempted kidnapping on Friday, March 5, 2021. Calgary Police Service

The girl declined to speak to the man and tried to leave, at which point the man pulled up his pants, left the van and approached her from behind, police said.

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“He opened the sliding door on the van and attempted to shove the girl in,” police said.

“The girl kicked the man and ran. The driver followed her in the van until she entered her home.”

Officers said the man was in his 30s with a heavy build and was wearing a green long-sleeve shirt, blue jeans and a blue toque.

If you have information about the incident, contact the police non-emergency line at 403-266-1234 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

Possible connection to Airdrie incidents

Calgary police confirmed to Global News they are looking at whether the incident could possibly be connected to similar incidents reported in Airdrie last month in which a suspicious man and vehicle were reported in the area of Sagewood Boulevard and Sagewood Drive, near C.W. Perry School.

The first incident happened at around noon on Feb. 1. RCMP said a man driving a white van stopped next to a female walking home from school and offered her a ride. “She was quick to refuse and ran from the area,” RCMP said in a Feb. 25 news release.

The second incident happened on Feb. 24 around 2:40 p.m. RCMP said a man driving a white Dodge minivan got out of his vehicle and “appeared to be following a child.” RCMP said the child ran away and the man got back into the van and left.

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While the suspect descriptions in the Airdrie incidents aren’t similar to the description of the offender from Calgary’s Saddlebrooke Drive incident, police said they are exploring all possibilities.

What to do if approached by a stranger

Child Safe Canada’s Tracey Warren said Sunday that the golden rule to teach kids is to never go anywhere with anyone without permission.

If a child is approached by a stranger driving a car, the best thing to do is ignore them.

“Don’t even talk to them. Don’t stop. Don’t listen… If their vehicle is going in [one] direction, you want to immediately turn around and go in [the opposite] direction,” Warren said.

If a child is grabbed, they should make as much noise as possible.

“Kick. Scream. Yell. Hit. Draw attention to yourself — that’s what we want kids to do,” Warren said.

– With files from Global News’ Jackie Wilson and Melissa Gilligan

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