Alert after schoolgirl 'followed home by man' in Poole

POLICE were called after a pupil at Branksome Heath Middle School in Poole said she was followed home on Tuesday night.

The young student was not attacked by the man, and was unable to recall much about his appearance to officers.

Head Stuart Fox has alerted parents and spoken to children during the assembly on Wednesday about the incident.

He said: “A little girl said she was followed along Livingstone Road and Churchill Road as she walked home after school.

“Whenever anything like this happens, we always alert the parents through a text system. We understand it can be alarming, but we feel that’s better than for parents not to know what’s happening. We also alert neighbouring schools so they can tell their students too.”

The pupil told her mother about the incident as soon as she returned home, and police were called.

“We have told our students about the importance of not walking home alone now it’s dark so early,” said Mr Fox.

“We’ve told pupils to walk home with parents or friends.”

A Dorset police spokesman said they had received a report of a man acting strangely in the vicinity of the school at around 5.30 pm on Tuesday.

He added: “Officers attended and conducted an area search. No offences have been disclosed and the local Safer Neighbourhood Team has been made aware.”

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6:59pm Wed 7 Nov 12

Oldcastle says...

Quote: He said: “A little girl said she was followed along Livingstone Road and Churchill Road as she walked home after school."

What age is a "little girl" - should she be by herself?

Was this man following the girl - or was he simply walking in the same direction behind her?

I'm glad nothing bad happened, but is there an "incident" here at all?
Quote: He said: “A little girl said she was followed along Livingstone Road and Churchill Road as she walked home after school." What age is a "little girl" - should she be by herself? Was this man following the girl - or was he simply walking in the same direction behind her? I'm glad nothing bad happened, but is there an "incident" here at all? Oldcastle

7:38pm Wed 7 Nov 12

pete woodley says...

Better safe than sorry.
Better safe than sorry. pete woodley

8:27pm Wed 7 Nov 12

Time_Traveller says...

Oldcastle wrote:
Quote: He said: “A little girl said she was followed along Livingstone Road and Churchill Road as she walked home after school."

What age is a "little girl" - should she be by herself?

Was this man following the girl - or was he simply walking in the same direction behind her?

I'm glad nothing bad happened, but is there an "incident" here at all?
I agree and that's the trouble today - we have all become so paranoid that it effects the children too - when in point of fact it is statistically more likely to be someone a child knows that will harm them, rather than a stranger.

We had a case a year or so ago in my area where a little girl aged 6 reported to her mother that a man in a car gave her some sweets. The mother naturally telephoned the police and the area was swarming with police within minutes - yet it turned out that the "man" was her friend's father and had given his daughter and her friend (the child in question) a packet of sweets after he got home from work and they were playing in his front garden!!!

Children need to be taught how to be safe, but also when to be sensible and differentiate between "a man gave me sweets" to "my friend's daddy gave me sweets" ....... it can make a lot of difference!
[quote][p][bold]Oldcastle[/bold] wrote: Quote: He said: “A little girl said she was followed along Livingstone Road and Churchill Road as she walked home after school." What age is a "little girl" - should she be by herself? Was this man following the girl - or was he simply walking in the same direction behind her? I'm glad nothing bad happened, but is there an "incident" here at all?[/p][/quote]I agree and that's the trouble today - we have all become so paranoid that it effects the children too - when in point of fact it is statistically more likely to be someone a child knows that will harm them, rather than a stranger. We had a case a year or so ago in my area where a little girl aged 6 reported to her mother that a man in a car gave her some sweets. The mother naturally telephoned the police and the area was swarming with police within minutes - yet it turned out that the "man" was her friend's father and had given his daughter and her friend (the child in question) a packet of sweets after he got home from work and they were playing in his front garden!!! Children need to be taught how to be safe, but also when to be sensible and differentiate between "a man gave me sweets" to "my friend's daddy gave me sweets" ....... it can make a lot of difference! Time_Traveller

11:17pm Wed 7 Nov 12

s-pb2 says...

Oldcastle wrote:
Quote: He said: “A little girl said she was followed along Livingstone Road and Churchill Road as she walked home after school."

What age is a "little girl" - should she be by herself?

Was this man following the girl - or was he simply walking in the same direction behind her?

I'm glad nothing bad happened, but is there an "incident" here at all?
I thought the same
[quote][p][bold]Oldcastle[/bold] wrote: Quote: He said: “A little girl said she was followed along Livingstone Road and Churchill Road as she walked home after school." What age is a "little girl" - should she be by herself? Was this man following the girl - or was he simply walking in the same direction behind her? I'm glad nothing bad happened, but is there an "incident" here at all?[/p][/quote]I thought the same s-pb2

6:49am Thu 8 Nov 12

tricky1007 says...

s-pb2 wrote:
Oldcastle wrote:
Quote: He said: “A little girl said she was followed along Livingstone Road and Churchill Road as she walked home after school."

What age is a "little girl" - should she be by herself?

Was this man following the girl - or was he simply walking in the same direction behind her?

I'm glad nothing bad happened, but is there an "incident" here at all?
I thought the same
I thought better to be safe than sorry and let all parents know and remind people of the dangers in society, but maybe thats just me
[quote][p][bold]s-pb2[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Oldcastle[/bold] wrote: Quote: He said: “A little girl said she was followed along Livingstone Road and Churchill Road as she walked home after school." What age is a "little girl" - should she be by herself? Was this man following the girl - or was he simply walking in the same direction behind her? I'm glad nothing bad happened, but is there an "incident" here at all?[/p][/quote]I thought the same[/p][/quote]I thought better to be safe than sorry and let all parents know and remind people of the dangers in society, but maybe thats just me tricky1007

8:57am Thu 8 Nov 12

hammer says...

So where was her mother and father when she walking home alone? I hope they make sure she does not walk home alone anymore!
So where was her mother and father when she walking home alone? I hope they make sure she does not walk home alone anymore! hammer

10:04am Thu 8 Nov 12

hadvar says...

When does 'walking in the same direction as' become 'following'? I'd suggest probably at exactly the same point as 'a storm in a teacup' becomes 'Echo news'.
When does 'walking in the same direction as' become 'following'? I'd suggest probably at exactly the same point as 'a storm in a teacup' becomes 'Echo news'. hadvar

1:47pm Thu 8 Nov 12

kingstonpaul says...

The paranoia around child abuse as a result of Savile, Rochdale, Rotherham, North Wales, etc, etc, is creating a febrile Salem style climate where paedo acivity is being imagined where none exists. We need to be careful that the innocent act of walking behind a young child doesn't act as cue for the lynch mob.
The paranoia around child abuse as a result of Savile, Rochdale, Rotherham, North Wales, etc, etc, is creating a febrile Salem style climate where paedo acivity is being imagined where none exists. We need to be careful that the innocent act of walking behind a young child doesn't act as cue for the lynch mob. kingstonpaul

6:35pm Thu 8 Nov 12

Celestine71 says...

hammer wrote:
So where was her mother and father when she walking home alone? I hope they make sure she does not walk home alone anymore!
Probably working! Trying to earn enough money to keep a roof over the family's head! Parents can't win nowadays - you're damned if you work and damned if you don't!

Why don't the police speak to the crossing patrol on the junction of Livingstone Road/Churchill Road....might they have seen something? They seem to know all their regulars and so a stranger tends to stand out. Just a thought.
[quote][p][bold]hammer[/bold] wrote: So where was her mother and father when she walking home alone? I hope they make sure she does not walk home alone anymore![/p][/quote]Probably working! Trying to earn enough money to keep a roof over the family's head! Parents can't win nowadays - you're damned if you work and damned if you don't! Why don't the police speak to the crossing patrol on the junction of Livingstone Road/Churchill Road....might they have seen something? They seem to know all their regulars and so a stranger tends to stand out. Just a thought. Celestine71

7:01pm Thu 8 Nov 12

Time_Traveller says...

Celestine71 wrote:
hammer wrote:
So where was her mother and father when she walking home alone? I hope they make sure she does not walk home alone anymore!
Probably working! Trying to earn enough money to keep a roof over the family's head! Parents can't win nowadays - you're damned if you work and damned if you don't!

Why don't the police speak to the crossing patrol on the junction of Livingstone Road/Churchill Road....might they have seen something? They seem to know all their regulars and so a stranger tends to stand out. Just a thought.
If you red the report, the child was walking home at 5.30pm - so the crossing patrol would have been long gone.

At the end of the day if this child is as young as the report would suggest, she probably shouldn't have been walking home alone, seeing as it is now dark at that time.

However, there is no suggestion whatsoever that anything was amiss - it is as "kingstonpaul" above mentions - society is turning everything and anything into a "child abuse" witch hunt where none exists.

If you read my earlier post I have mentioned a recent example near where I live - it is all quite ridiculous.

Kids should know when they are at risk and there is no question about that - but to encourage and foster their insecurities of the *level* or risk to them from every day situations needs to be kept under control, instead of parents making them so paranoid thay even someone walking along the same stretch of road as them is considered a danger. It's quite ridiculous!
[quote][p][bold]Celestine71[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]hammer[/bold] wrote: So where was her mother and father when she walking home alone? I hope they make sure she does not walk home alone anymore![/p][/quote]Probably working! Trying to earn enough money to keep a roof over the family's head! Parents can't win nowadays - you're damned if you work and damned if you don't! Why don't the police speak to the crossing patrol on the junction of Livingstone Road/Churchill Road....might they have seen something? They seem to know all their regulars and so a stranger tends to stand out. Just a thought.[/p][/quote]If you red the report, the child was walking home at 5.30pm - so the crossing patrol would have been long gone. At the end of the day if this child is as young as the report would suggest, she probably shouldn't have been walking home alone, seeing as it is now dark at that time. However, there is no suggestion whatsoever that anything was amiss - it is as "kingstonpaul" above mentions - society is turning everything and anything into a "child abuse" witch hunt where none exists. If you read my earlier post I have mentioned a recent example near where I live - it is all quite ridiculous. Kids should know when they are at risk and there is no question about that - but to encourage and foster their insecurities of the *level* or risk to them from every day situations needs to be kept under control, instead of parents making them so paranoid thay even someone walking along the same stretch of road as them is considered a danger. It's quite ridiculous! Time_Traveller

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