Another child was targeted in an abduction attempt by a hooded man just 500 metres away from an earlier failed child snatch the same afternoon, a headteacher has revealed.
A schoolboy from Clare House Primary School in Beckenham was told to go with a hooded man wearing a mask as he played in a wooded area of Kelsey Park at 4.30pm on Friday, it was revealed in a letter home to parents seen by The Standard.
The man fled when the boy shouted out to a nearby friend.
The boy was unharmed and later saw the masked man escape in a black van after telling his mother what happened.
It followed another attempted abduction of an 11-year-old boy walking home from school in nearby Whitmore Road in Beckenham on Friday afternoon, when two men in a small black van asked him if he wanted a lift, the Metropolitan Police said.
Clare House headteacher Mrs Jane Holland wrote home to parents to provide details of the latest attempted abduction.
She wrote: “I want to make you aware that it has been reported that a similar incident happened to one of our children in Kelsey Park on Friday at around 4.30pm.
“The child and some school friends were playing in the wooded area of the park when a man approached the child and told him to go with him. He ran away immediately but the man followed him for a short time until the child called one of his friends and the man ran away.”
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The headteacher said the child’s parents were nearby and listened to the boy.
She added: “The child reported that he had seen a black van drive past and the man was in it. He was reported to be wearing black with a hood up and a mask on.”
The headteacher said the abduction attempt was reported to police and Year 5 and 6 will be having an assembly on the matter.
The Metropolitan police couldn’t immediately say whether the two incidents are linked. They have been approached for further comment.
It came after Sherise Blackman, who played cop Ruby Jones in the hit BBC series, called police after a group of men tried to kidnap her 11-year-old son on Friday.
The youngster was walking home from school when the terrifying ordeal unfolded.
However, Ms Blackman said once she got her son home, officers tried to “fob off” his version of events.
A spokesperson said the boy was not physically harmed but was left “very shaken” by the incident which would be “fully investigated.”
Supt Brittain added: “CCTV of the area is currently being reviewed to identify any possible suspects. Detectives have been in touch with the boy’s parents to update them on the investigation so far, and will continue to keep them informed of any developments.
“I want to reassure the boy’s parents and the wider community that this incident is being fully investigated to establish the full circumstances of what happened.”
He added: “I would also appeal to anyone who witnessed this incident to come forward and speak to officers, especially the two men playing tennis that the victim approached for help.”
One of the men is described as white, approximately 5ft 10in tall while the second is described as 6ft tall.
No arrests have been made and enquiries continue.
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