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September 15, 2017

Six child luring incidents reported in five days in Northeast Philadelphia

Police Investigations
 Philadelphia Police Car Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice Staff

A Philadelphia Police Department cruiser.

Update: Late Friday afternoon, police said they were investigating two additional cases. The story has been updated.

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Police are investigating six separate cases of child luring in Northeast Philadelphia since Monday. 

The department's Special Victims Unit said the pattern is based on "modus operandi, description of offender and geographic proximity." It is seeking the public's help in identifying and locating a suspect or suspects in the incidents. 

In the first incident, at 3 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 12, students were leaving a school in the 400 block of Tomlinson Road when they were approached by a Hispanic male in a black vehicle, police said. The man reportedly offered each of them cash if they got into the back of the car.  The students said they ran and the man left the area.

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The man was described as a Hispanic, clean shaven, short black hair, black rolled-up ski mask, possibly driving a black SUV (possibly a Tahoe or Suburban) with damage to front bumper, broken headlight, tinted windows, with one black wheel, and three silver wheels.

In the second incident, at about 12:25 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 13, in the 1000 block of Byberry Road in Somerton,  two students at Watson Comly School told school staff that they saw a male outside of the school, wearing all black and wearing a mask. The male didn't do anything just was suspicious. 

In the third incident, on Thursday about 8 a.m., a student saw a male taking pictures and recording children who were in the school yard, on the 5300 block of Ditman Street. The suspect was described as a Hispanic male, with a beard, wearing a light green shirt.

On Friday, about 8 a.m. on the 4900 block of Ditman Street, a male suspect stopped his vehicle next to a 10-year-old girl, showed her money and a camera, and asked if he could take her photo. The girl ran to school and told an adult what happened to her. The suspect was described as a Hispanic male, with black hair and a beard, wearing a black shirt, and driving a black car with black tinted windows.

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About 10 minutes later and several blocks away, a male suspect stopped his vehicle next to a 10-year-old girl, showed her money and a camera, and asked to take her photo. The girl ran to Sullivan Elementary School and told an adult what happened. The suspect was described as a white man, 30-40 years old, with a beard and mustache, wearing a black t-shirt and driving a black car with heavy tint on windows.

About 30 minutes later, another incident was reported just a couple of blocks away in Wissinoming.

In the 5300 block of Gillespie Street, about 8:45 a.m., police said a man told a 10-year-old girl to come over to his car, then started unzipping his pants. The complainant ran and to Lawton School and reported the incident to an adult. The man was describe as white, between 30-40 years old, with green eyes and no facial hair or glasses, bald on the top of his head with black hair on the sides, wearing a black shirt, jeans and black boots.                                   

Anyone with information on any of the incidents is asked to please contact the Special Victim Unit at 215-685-3252, or call 911.