Editorial: Stranger danger exists so be alert

By Craig Cooper

Parents and principals with the courage to publicly speak out against strangers lurking around children should be applauded.

As highlighted in the Northern Advocate today, "stranger danger" is causing concern around Whangarei.

It also appears a man that sharp-eyed Christian Renewal School staff spotted on Monday on Tarewa Rd is the same man that a Whangarei mum believes tried to lure her 9-year-old daughter into a van on Wednesday.

Police have urged people to contact them immediately if they notice suspicious activity outside schools or around children.

Staff at the Christian Renewal School on Tarewa Rd noticed a man taking photos about 9.30am on Monday.

It's believed he had hidden behind some bushes near the footpath, which ran alongside the school, and took the photos.

A staff member spotted the man but he walked away before he could be spoken to.

As acting principal Ray Green says, "Don't be afraid to contact the police. It's better to report it and be wrong than not to report it and be right".

The man was described as Caucasian, about 60 years old, and at the time was wearing a black wide-rimmed hat.

He also had on tan-coloured pants and a light-coloured fisherman's vest with lots of pockets. He has a deeply wrinkled face, appears dishevelled, with grey curly hair and a beard or other facial hair.

Be vigilant around our kids - a quick call to police and, easily, the hunter becomes the hunted.

- Northern Advocate

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