Girl tells Cedar Rapids police she was approached while walking to school

Man tried to get 12-year-old into van along Third Avenue SE

Officials are investigating after a man allegedly attempted to coax a young girl into his van Tuesday morning.

According to authorities, a 12-year-old girl was approached in the 1200 block of Third Avenue SE between 7 and 8 a.m. Tuesday by a man driving a dark blue full-sized van. Officials said the van stopped and the driver opened the door. The 12-year-old girl was aware that the van was following her, and ran across the street.

Officials said the driver yelled at her to stop and come back, but she ignored him and ran to McKinley Middle School, 620 10th St. SE. Authorities said she reported the incident to staff members, who then reported it to law enforcement. Officers searched the area, but were unable to locate the van.

Authorities believe the driver to be a white male, between 30 and 40 years old, with dark brown hair in the style of a Mohawk. He was last seen wearing a gray t-shirt and blue jeans.

According to a news release, parents are encouraged to talk to their children about what to do in situations like this. Also to look for businesses, churches or other schools that students could enter to report incidents that may occur while en route to school.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Linn County Crime Stoppers at (800) CS-CRIME (272-7463) or text CRIMES (274637) and in the message/subject, type 5227 and the tip. If the information leads to an arrest, you may be eligible for a reward. All calls are anonymous.

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