Burleson and Keene municipalities and Johnson County Sheriff’s Office are in wait and see mode in the pursuit of suspects of four recent attempted child abductions.

Three were in Burleson. Two are believed connected, Sheriff Bob Alford said.

One was in a recently incorporated area of Keene. It has not been linked to the other three.

“Whether it’s two perverts or three perverts running loose at the same time and trying to do this, we don’t know,” Alford said. “Burleson and Keene are doing a good job following up leads, and we’ll do anything we can to help them.”

On Jan. 9 at 8:40 a.m., a white male aged 20s or 30s with short brown hair and average build and wearing an orange and white University of Texas sweatshirt, blue jeans and tennis shoes attempted to abduct a 9-year-old girl walking her dog in the 1000 block of Remington Circle in Burleson.

“The puppy started growling,” Alford said, “and the girl looked up and saw the individual approaching her. She went back to her apartment, went inside and locked the door. Her mother saw a small, gray Dodge pickup leaving the area.”

On Jan. 11 at 4:40 p.m., a white male with a black hoodie, dark blue jeans and black tennis shoes attempted to abduct a 14-year-old girl in the 500 block of Jayellen in Burleson. A car described as a white, two-door Accura was reported leaving the area.

Also that day, at 5:40 p.m. in the Remington Circle neighborhood, a 10-year-old boy departing a school bus was accosted by a white male reported to be driving a small, gray Dodge pickup.

“The man yelled at the boy and asked him to come to his vehicle,” Alford said. “The boy didn’t. He went in his house and shut and locked the door.”

On Jan. 13 in Keene in the 3000 block of County Road 305-B, the Union Hill area, a 10-year-old boy was approached and chased by a 5 foot 10 inch to 6 foot, skinny, white male wearing dark colored clothing.

The man spoke English well, Alford said. The boy reached home unharmed.

A black sedan, possibly a Honda Prelude, was reported by neighbors as leaving the scene.

There are no suspects in the four cases, Alford said.

Investigators have combed lists of registered sex offenders in the area.

“That’s the first step,” Alford said. “All are interviewed about where they were at the time of the offenses. The next thing you do is see who’s just been released from jail and may live in that area and what their criminal history is, whether it be child abduction, narcotics or assault. You go through the data base of what’s available to you at the time.

“The neighbors have been alerted and asked to keep their eyes and ears open. The best deterrent to crime is a good, nosy neighbor. We want to encourage the entire county to be on the lookout, because we’ve had four attempts in a short time period. That’s not a good situation.

“Everybody just needs to be on their guard. That may result in surveillances and increased patrols in those areas. Our deputies will be working a little stronger backing up Keene. Keene doesn’t have as many officers as Burleson does. We have good relations with all the agencies. If need be, Burleson will help Keene, and Keene will help Burleson.”

Alford said he was unaware whether Tarrant County, which abuts Burleson, has been checked for possible suspects among registered sex offenders.

“I don’t know the answer to that. That’s a good question.”

Child abductors possess multifaceted methods of operation.

“They may have a target victim,” Alford said. “They may watch a residential area. They may live in the residential area. Most of them have an age and sex preference, but a lot of times they’ll take what’s available and what they think they can get by with. It may be self-gratification. It could be a straight kidnapping. You don’t know. When there is an abduction, the first 24 hours is the most critical time in an investigation.”

The four children in the attempted abductions acted intelligently.

“They did exactly the right thing,” Alford said. “If kids aren’t close to their residences, they need to go to screaming and run to the closest residence and beat on the door. Normally, the pervert will flee.”

One of Alford’s children was an attempted abduction victim in Corpus Christi.

“She was walking home from school, and the guy asked her where her school was,” Alford said. “She turned around and pointed. He wanted her to show him on a map. She had been schooled [how to react]. She ran to a store. She described him and his vehicle to me to a T. It took one week, and he came back [to that store]. We got him.”

The perpetrator may or may not know the identify of the victim, Alford said.

“In a lot of instances, they may not know the name or parents, but they’ve seen the child somewhere and followed the child home.”

Parents should be alert, he said.

“We don’t ever want to live in a state of fear,” Alford said. “But we do want to live in a state of awareness and be cognizant of our surroundings. Four abduction attempts is too many. One is too many.”

Anyone with information may call Crime Stoppers at 817-295-5323. Callers may remain anonymous.

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