Attempted luring investigated in South Jersey

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Police in South Jersey are on alert after somebody in a car tried to lure a 10-year-old boy in Mount Ephraim.

When Megan Mackey got the call that someone tried to lure her son, Tim, her heart sank.

"I'm scared for my other children, and children in the area. I hope they catch this person before he gets a kid," Mackey said.

The incident happened just after 3:00 p.m. Monday.

Tim left Kershaw Middle School and headed home. He was in a hurry and decided to take a faster route along Blackhorse Pike rather than the usual way where his friends go.

Surveillance video captured him running through a parking lot on Blackhorse Pike and Kings Highway.

Just as he exits the screen, Tim says a Hyundai Sonata pulled up.

"He put down the passenger side window and just demanded, said 'get in the car,'" Mt. Ephraim Police Captain Brian Beppel said.

Tim bolted home and police were notified.

Within 20 minutes, Mt. Ephraim Schools Superintendent Joe Rafferty learned of the luring attempt.

"We put it up on our Connect Day communication system that instantaneously communicates with every person, every phone number that we have, so that every parent would know right away what was going on," Rafferty said.

Police are working to enhance surveillance video of a vehicle shown moments after the luring attempt.

They believe it's a 2006-2009 royal blue Hyundai Sonata with tinted windows.

The suspect description is vague, a white male in his 20s with short hair.

Tim is safe tonight because police say he did the right thing and ran for help.

"It's really important for parents to know what routes their kids are taking and we would encourage them to travel in groups," Captain Beppel said.

Investigators say there have been no similar luring attempts in the county to this one or one involving a Hyundai Sonata.

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new jersey, camden county, luring, crime, chad pradelli
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