Albany Police are asking parents in Arbor Hill to take extra precautions after a man reportedly attempted to abduct two young girls as they walked home from school Monday afternoon. YNN's Matt Hunter reports.
ALBANY, N.Y. -- "I pick my kid up, she's 11,” Gwanda Edwards said Tuesday evening. “She's a little girl, I'm not letting her walk anywhere.”
Like many parents at the Arbor Hill Elementary School, Edwards was disturbed by Tuesday's news that a day earlier a man tried to abduct two young girls as they walked home.
"These are babies,” said Edwards, whose daughter is in the sixth grade. “They're not even teenagers or young adults so what's the madness behind it? It's unreal."
"Right now, it's an ongoing investigation,” Albany Police Department spokesperson Steve Smith said. “The only information we have right now is it's a black male in his 30s who is operating a silver colored van."
According to police, the man, who witnesses say was driving a silver van, approached the two girls as they were walking home here on Arbor Drive. The girls declined and ran away safely toward an older brother before notifying an adult.
"These girls were great,” Smith said. “They did exactly what they were supposed to do."
"They were wise and smart enough to say 'no' and let me go report this and that was a good thing and I'm glad they were safe," Edwards said.
Just last week, police made an arrest following a similar incident on Delaware Avenue. The events have many like dance teacher Chantel Johnson taking extra precautions.
"We take them all home, we don't leave here until every girl's home,” said Johnson, whose class is given at the school at night. “We don't typically do that, but we are now."
Albany Police ask anyone with information to contact their detective's unit.
While officers continue their investigation, parents remain grateful no children were harmed.
"We've just got to be aware and it has to be a team effort,” Edwards said. “Everybody has to look out and watch out for the kids, especially in our community."