Stow Police Warn Parents of Suspicious Man

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STOW, Ohio -- Police in Stow are investigating two separate cases where strangers approached children in manners that are text-book for child abductions.

"I think it was dangerous. I think this guy was trying to get him away from where we were," said a parent, named Melissa, who did not want her identity revealed.

Melissa said her children and a handful of kids were playing basketball Monday afternoon at SKiP park, along with a middle-aged man.

They first assumed the man was accompanying one of the other children.

Now they believe he was alone.

"Couple of the kids came down and my 10-year-old came running down to me, 'Mom, this guy's trying to get this boy to walk over here with him,' and I said, 'Hey, you need to stay over here,' and the guy about-faced and just walked completely away," Melissa said.

Jason Dresden, of Stow, reported the other incident on March 17.

He said his stepdaughter and other children were playing in the front yard when it happened.

"A male pulled up in a blue car and approached some of the children that were playing in the area and mentioned that he had lost a dog, and the dog's name was on the collar with a phone number, and in about a minute or so, the kids noticed it was a freaky, creepy situation," Dresden said.

Stow Police said they don't know if any crime was being committed, they are merely calling these "suspicious incidents."

What they want is more information about these two incidents, and for parents to be cautious.

Police said the descriptions are different.

Both men are white and middle-aged, but the man in the March incident had thick, black hair and a goatee. He was driving a newer blue car.

The man in SKiP park was tall, heavyset, gray and balding, with a thick white mustache.

"Doesn't sound like the same guy at all," Melissa said.

"Do the 'stranger danger' talk, it never gets old," Dresden said.

If anyone has information on either of these two incidents, please contact the Stow Police Department on the Detective Bureau Administrative line (330) 689-5730.

Police ask if anyone has a similar incident to report to contact the Stow Police Department at (330) 689-5700 as soon as possible.