NBC10.com - Denise Nakano
A Delaware school district is warning parents, after a young boy says a man tried to lure him into his vehicle. NBC10' Denise Nakano talked to the boy and his mother.
The first thing that Erik Juarez remembered was what his mother told him.
"I was thinking in my head, 'Who is he?' I don't know him,'" Juarez said.
The 10-year-old Delaware boy was waiting at his bus stop Wednesday morning at the corner of Hunn and Bassette Avenues in the Wilmington Manor section of New Castle. Suddenly, a man driving a black truck drove up to him.
"He came down and asked me if I was a hitchhiker and if I needed a ride or if I was lost," Juarez said.
Juarez ran away and alerted his neighbors, something that he says his mother taught him to do.
"I was proud that finally something I said went through him," Pamela Juarez said. "I'm very proud of Erik."
One of Erik's neighbors, Andrea Petro, called police as the man fled the scene.
"You always hear stories," Petro said. "You never think it's going to hit close to home but it sure did today."
Officials at New Castle Elementary where Erik attends notified parents of students in a recorded phone message.
“I applaud this youngster for knowing exactly what to do when confronted with a stranger who could have lured him into his vehicle,” said New Castle Superintendent Dr. Dorothy Linn. “I encourage all parents to talk to their children about stranger danger in an informative yet non-frightening manner tonight."
The boy described the suspect as a heavy-set Hispanic man with a dragon tattoo on his wrist and a wedding band tattoo on his finger. Police also say the suspect was driving a newer model black Silverado vehicle with a dent on the tailgate. They also say the vehicle may have a Maryland tag which is faded in color.
If you have any information on the suspect, please call New Castle County Police at 302-573-2800.