Met police warn against online speculation over reported South London child abductions | #childabductors

The Metropolitan Police’s Croydon branch has released a tweet warning the public over online speculation in light of recent incidents involving reported abduction attempts of children in South London.

In recent weeks the police have investigated four separate incidents in which children were reportedly approached in the Bromley area but were not harmed.

Following growing concerns and online speculation the MPS Croydon issued a tweet urging the public not to speculate, it said: “Police are aware of recent alarming social media posts, providing speculative details about suspicious incidents involving children.

Supt Andy Brittain said: “I understand the concern expressed on social media and would like to reassure people there is no cause for alarm.

“If we receive information that increases any risk to our children, I will ensure that our residents and schools are made aware immediately .

“I would urge the community not to speculate any further.”

The tweet follows a previous statement issued on the May 7 to reassure concerned parents following the four reported incidents.

Two incidents were reported to have taken place on Friday, 30 April after an 11-year-old boy was approached by a man in a black van who asked him if he wanted a lift. While an eight-year-old boy was reportedly approached in the wooded area of Kelsey Park.

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A further report was received on Thursday, May 6 after a male pupil reported to staff at his school that he had been followed in the street by a man the previous day.

On Friday, May 7 there was a third party report of a perceived attempted abduction of a little girl in The Glades shopping centre, Bromley.

The incidents have sparked speculation on social media and concern among parents in the area, and some locals have even taken things into their own hands.

The Met had previously said that the reported incidents were not linked and that there was “no specific risk” to children in South London.

The force has also increased their presence in the borough after calls from concerned parents.

Superintendent Andy Brittain said: “I would encourage the public to remain vigilant, but not to be unduly alarmed. Child kidnappings or abductions are, thankfully, incredibly rare, but we are not complacent.”

No children were abducted or harmed in any of the four reported incidents.

There have also been reports of attempted child abductions in other areas of London such as Enfield.

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