Fears of child snatchers in Blackpool were unfounded

A Facebook post which claimed a pair of men tried to snatch a child off a Blackpool street was unfounded.

Wednesday, 14th November 2018, 2:39 pm
Updated Wednesday, 14th November 2018, 3:44 pm
The claims were posted on Facebook
The claims were posted on Facebook

Police say they are satisfied that 'no offences at all' took place following a report that a child had been approached by a man in a vehicle on St George’s Road at some time between 3 and 3:30pm yesterday.

A Facebook post, which was shared more than 4,000 times, claimed two Indian men in a red transit van with 'three children tied to chairs in the back' had attempted to snatch a child on St James Road as he walked home from school. Despite the differing locations, police told The Gazette their statement and the Facebook post related to the same alleged incident.

The woman who made the post, which had since been deleted, said: "My child panicked... thought some people were going to take him, but the people concerned were actually innocent and had kids with them in the van, which is what he saw."

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She added that she was 'relieved' to finally get to the bottom of what happened.

A police spokesman said: "Officers have been making extensive enquiries including speaking to the person who made the report. We are now satisfied that no offences at all have occurred.

"Speculation and third hand reports on social media can quickly cause concern so we would like to remind people to be wary of misinformation. If you are concerned about any suspicious activity, please report it to police in the first instance.

"Thank you for your patience and understanding while we carried out a thorough investigation."

They added no action would be taken against the woman who posted the allegations.