Police reassure public after rumours circulate on social media of a man approaching a child in Berkhamsted

Officers investigated the incident

Wednesday, 5th May 2021, 12:44 pm

Police in Dacorum have reassured the public after rumours began to circulate on social media in relation to a suspicious incident where a man approached a child in Berkhamsted last week.

Police enquiries have been carried out by the force and the following statement has been posted on the Dacorum Police Facebook page: "We are aware of rumours circulating on social media in relation to a suspicious incident where a man approached a child in the Berkhamsted area last week and would like to clarify the situation, now that police enquiries have been carried out.

"On Tuesday 27 April we received a report of a man approaching a primary-aged child and attempting to engage them in conversation as they were walking home from school with their parent.

Police

"The man did not attempt to touch or grab the child at any point, and he left in a white van. The child was with their parent throughout, who after the incident informed the school and the police.

"We began making a number of enquiries, and a person of interest was quickly identified. They were spoken to by officers and a number of checks were carried out.

"The relevant information has been recorded on our system and the local teams have been made aware of the report.

"However it is important to note that there is no evidence to suggest the person’s actions were of criminal intent, and no arrests have been made. They have been given words of advice by officers.

"We completely understand that parents and families’ concerns will be raised when hearing about a report of this nature but on this occasion, we are satisfied that no offences were committed.

"Therefore we would ask the public to be mindful of the language they use on social media sites if and when discussing this incident.

"The parent did absolutely the right thing by reporting the incident to both the school and the police so the relevant safeguarding procedures were put in place and police enquiries could be carried out."

You can report suspicious activity to police online, using the web chat service or by calling 101.

If you think a crime is in progress, or someone is in immediate danger, always dial 999.