RCMP in Alberta community try to quell online gossip over man in van

By on October 24, 2017


Airdrie detachment (Photo by Royal Canadian Mounted Police)
Airdrie detachment (Photo by Royal Canadian Mounted Police)

AIRDRIE, Alta. — RCMP in a community north of Calgary are trying to quell an online frenzy of reports of attempted abductions of children, calling them well-intentioned but misinformed and misleading.

It started Friday night and Saturday morning when Mounties in the Airdrie detachment received two complaints of attempted abductions.

The RCMP say they are being investigated but the differing circumstances and descriptions led to the conclusion there was no individual actively attempting to kidnap children.

However, over recent days Mounties say there have been numerous posts to social media by community groups detailing suspicious encounters with unknown people and several complaints filed about a suspicious male in a van near children.

Mounties say several vans were identified and in each case it was determined “that operators were abiding persons who simply live and work here in Airdrie.”

They ask members of the public to come to police with any concerns rather than sharing it online.

“As a mother and as a part of this community, I can well appreciate the concern that people have with the reports that are out there right now,” Insp. Kim Pasloske, commanding officer of Airdrie RCMP detachment, says in a news release.

“Unfortunately, that concern can lead to sharing of incomplete or inaccurate information online which impedes the police investigation. I would ask that everyone refrain from sharing heresay online and report any facts they have to our investigators so we can determine what took place in each of these incidents.”