Image: Google maps
Image: Google maps

The Berkeley Unified School District is alerting the community to an attempted abduction of three girls Sunday on College Avenue.

According to a notice released Monday morning by the school district, the girls were walking on College Avenue and Webster Street at about 6:10 p.m. when a man near a van yelled at them to get inside.

“The girls started to run away and the suspect started following them on foot,” according to BUSD. “The girls started to scream and the suspect got back in his van and drove away south on College Avenue.”

The man was described as Hispanic, 20 to 30 years old, with dark hair and a mustache. He was driving an older model, dark green or blue mini-van with tinted windows.

According to BUSD: “The victims in this case used excellent personal safety habits, immediately leaving the area of the suspect, and reporting the matter to authorities.”

See safety tips from Kidpower related to abduction attempts. 

One of the girls was 10 and the other was 11. The age of the third girl was not immediately available, police said.

This incident is similar to two that occurred Sept. 18 near Willard Middle School on Telegraph Avenue. In that incident, a man in a dark green minivan tried to convince two children to get into it. A short time later, authorities believe there was a similar attempt by the same individual with another student in the parking lot of a store at Telegraph and Derby.

According to the school district, police are working with school officials and other Berkeley school campuses “to share information regarding this most recent incident and some personal safety measures.”

Police are also providing extra patrols around Berkeley schools.

Police ask anyone with information about this incident to contact the Berkeley Police Department at 510-981-5900. Callers who wish to remain anonymous can reach Bay Area Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.

Authorities respond to 2 incidents at Malcolm X School (09.21.15)
Berkeley schools on alert after 2 abduction attempts (09.18.15)

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Emilie Raguso (former senior editor, news) joined Berkeleyside in 2012 and covered politics, public safety and development until her departure in 2022. In 2017, Emilie was named Journalist of the Year...