An alert has been emailed to parents whose children attend the Monroe-Gregg School District after children spotted a man lurking in a neighborhood.
The first case was reported to the Morgan County Sheriff's office last Friday. Investigators said a man parked his pickup truck near an abandoned home. There was a boy walking home after he got off the school bus. The man asked the kid if he needed a ride. It happened at the Briarwood Lake subdivision.
Fishel has lived in the Briarwood Lake neighborhood for 16 years.
"I told my daughter she's not allowed to walk out here by herself," Fishel said. "I'm very concerned. There's a lot of kids out here."
On Friday, Nov. 2, investigators were called back to the neighborhood because a 15-year-old girl spotted a man standing by her home. She said he was dressed in black.
"She was getting ready to meet her friends for a ride to the bus stop and she came out the front door and screamed at the top of her lungs and said (she) saw a man with black hair and a black beard," said Michelle Westbrook, President of the Briarwood Association Michelle Westbrook.
Investigators checked the woods near the neighborhood, but did not find anything or anyone.
"A mom knows when her baby's scared and that baby was scared 'cause I was scared by the time I heard her and I'm grabbing things to defend off whoever," Westbrook said.
People who live in the neighborhood have started watching out for each other.
"We're all looking out for everybody's kids, volunteering to take them and pick them up from the bus stop," Westbrook said.
Neighbors said they have seen a deputy patrolling the area, since this happened. An investigator said a deputy was at the bus stop Friday afternoon. If anyone has information, contact the sheriff's office.
A number of parents said they would have hoped the school system would have notified parents more about what was going on.
The Monroe-Greg School District issued the following alert to parents:
"Monroe-Gregg School District IMPORTANT ALERT---- We have been alerted to a potential situation concerning our students of all ages. This morning a man in his late 20's or early 30"s dressed in all black, with black hair and a black beard approached a female student in the Briarwood area as she walked to the bus stop.
"We are asking parents to watch for a man fitting the above description and possibly driving a late 1990's silver 4 X 4 Ford Pick-Up truck with lightly tented windows that sometimes has a camper shell on it. The vehicle has been spotted in the Briarwood area and near Hall Church.
"If you spot the vehicle or see any activity that you believe is suspicious, please immediately dial 911.
"We are asking that you walk your child(ren) to and from the bus stop. If you are unable to walk your child(ren) to the bus stop, please work with a neighbor, friend or family member who may be able to do this for you. We are also asking you talk with your child(ren) about this situation and how to handle any stranger approaching them either in a vehicle or on foot.
"Our bus drivers have been given the information and been asked to immediately contact the Transportation Director who will contact the Police with the location of the spotting of the individual or vehicle. We have also informed all administrators and parking lot supervisors to be watchful of all vehicles in the parking lot before and after school".
The alert was sent by Superintendent Dr. Julie Wood.