Police investigate 3rd incident near LI high school

In just over a week
January 17, 2008 2:51:57 PM PST
Some school officials in Mastic, Long Island have beefed up security and canceled recess after police got a call about a possible attempted abduction near William Floyd High School.This is the third incident there in just over a week.

Long Island reporter Emily Smith has details from Shirley.

Police say it is highly unusual for a school district to have to deal with three incidents of this nature in just about a week's time.

Authorities do not believe they are all related, but say each one is credible. Students and parents say they are scared.

The students were especially on guard today, knowing that a third student has gone to police since last Thursday to report an incident involving sexual abuse or an attempted abduction.

"The description of all three suspects is different, and what they were doing is certainly different," Suffolk police inspector John Meehan said. "They're operation was different."

At a bus stop just before 8 a.m., police say a William Floyd middle school student escaped an attempted abduction. The sixth-grade girl told police a man tried to lure her into his SUV, offering her a ride to school.

The suspect is described as a black man wearing army fatigues and driving a dark red Humvee. The students say in light of all this, no one feels safe.

"Cause my brother and sister are in elementary school, and they're not allowed, they have indoor recess now, they're not allowed outside anymore," one student said.

Earlier this week, a high school girl told police a man through her to the ground behind the school and tried to sexually abuse her. She was able to escape. Then last Thursday, a high school student said a man pretended to be a cop and sexually abused in a vacant trailer near the school.

An arrest was made in the last case, but police are still searching for other suspects.

Students wonder who will be targeted next?

"My girlfriend, I worry about her," one student said. "I don't let her walk home alone. I don't trust anybody in this neighborhood."

Police are asking bus drivers, teachers, parents and everyone else to be vigilant. Anyone with information is asked to call police.