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Inuvik police warn of possible child abduction attempt

Kira Curtis
Northern News Services
Published Monday, February 28, 2011

INUVIK - After a reported attempted abduction of a seven-year-old boy in Inuvik, police are asking residents to report anything unusual they may have seen on Monday, Feb. 21.

The boy was walking back to Sir Alexander Mackenzie School on Bompas Street near Loucheux Road at around 12:45 p.m. when a vehicle pulled up along side him.

According to the boy, the man in the vehicle grabbed him by the neck of his jacket.

"The boy managed to free himself and ran directly back home and reported it to his mother and brother," said Cpl. Kent Pike with Inuvik RCMP. The boy's mother then called the RCMP to report the incident.

"We immediately spoke with the boy and tried to obtain as much information as possible," Pike said.

The boy told RCMP he was not able to get a good look at the driver but could tell them the attacker was a male and he appeared to be alone.

"It was a very scary incident for the boy," Pike continued. "He wasn't able to describe the male in any way other that it was a male, but he did manage to provide us a somewhat vague description of the vehicle."

The vehicle in question is possibly a dark green, or black SUV. Pike said that area of Bompas Street is busy around lunch time, not only with students but people returning to Mackenzie Road after lunch.

He is hoping someone may have seen something that would give the police more detail.

"The difficulty with an SUV - dark colour - there's many of those in town," Pike said, "and if we had something more to go on that could narrow our search, that would help the investigation.

"Obviously an incident of this nature would be quite traumatic to a seven year old, to any individual," Pike said, adding the police are confident that, though vague, the description of the vehicle is accurate, "(The boy) associates this with his own family vehicle, so we're quite confident that it is a vehicle of that type."

Pike said an incident like this is very rare in Inuvik.

"Even though we're the hub for the more Northern communities here, we're considered a smaller community where most people know everybody," Pike said.

Adding to the situation is that, unlike most child abduction cases where kids are often vocally lured toward the stranger, the man didn't say anything to the boy, just tried to grab him.

"And that's what kind of makes it that much more difficult and why we're reaching out to the public," Pike said. "Not only to inform the public of this situation but for any assistance for anything that people might have seen or have heard around town."

Anyone with information is asked to call the Inuvik RCMP or Crime Stoppers.

"It is a very serious incident, something that we don't want to see happen again," Pike said.

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