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Carroll police investigating suspicious offer of a ride to 11-year-old

By Katie V. Jones

1:09 PM EDT, March 14, 2013

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Sykesville Police are looking for a white man, possibly in his 50s, balding with short white hair, following a reported attempt to pick up an 11-year-old girl on March 12 around 7 p.m. in Sykesville.

Police said a man driving a dark car, possibly a newer, four-door Volkswagen, approached the girl at Brandenburg Circle and Norris Avenue and told her that there was an emergency and her parents asked him to get her.

According to police, the girl ignored the man and continued on to her friend's house, where she spoke of the incident and then alerted her family..

Police responded to a call from the girl's father regarding the incident but did not find the man or the car.

"She did the right and good thing to do," said Sykesville Police Chief John Williams on March 13.

"She should be commended," Williams said.

There will be an increased police patrol in the area, Williams said, and the department also alerted Sykesville Middle School about the incident.

With the shift to daylight-saving time last weekend, children will be spending more time outside, Williams said, and it is important for parents and guardians to remind them what steps to take when approached by a stranger.

They should not accept any offers of a ride or an opportunity to pet any animals, he said.

"If they don't know these individuals, they should continue on to their destination or to yell, scream or get attention of an adult," Williams said.

"We want to make sure these types of incidents have this type of ending," he said.

Williams also encouraged residents to take steps that would make them better witnesses.

"So many people have cell phones on them, and they have a camera," Williams said. "If you see something strange, try to remember as much as you can and take a picture in an effort to identify the individual."

Police said anyone who sees something suspicious should call the Sykesville Police Department at 410-795-0757.