Crime

January 17, 2014

Man who asked girl about lost dog not suspicious at all, police say

Burleson police closed the case after the man called them and identified himself.

A man who stopped to ask a third-grader whether she had lost a puppy triggered alarms for parents, educators and law enforcement officials this week.

But after a thorough investigation, the incident seems to be nothing more than that: A man stopped his car to ask a child whether she had lost a puppy.

Burleson police closed the investigation after interviewing the man Friday, according to a news release. After the incident was publicized, the man contacted police and identified himself.

He said that signs were up in the neighborhood about a lost dog and that when he saw the child, a Bransom Elementary School student, walking with her mother following in a car nearby, he stopped to ask whether she had lost a dog.

The investigation started Wednesday when the mother told a Burleson police officer that a man had stopped his vehicle — a silver or gray two-door hatchback — next to her daughter about 3 p.m. Tuesday and talked to her.

The incident took place near Parkridge Boulevard and Springhill Drive. The mother was following her daughter in her vehicle as the girl walked home from the school at 820 S. Hurst Road.

The girl told her mother that the man — described as white and balding and in his late 30s or early 40s — asked whether she had lost a puppy and that she said “no.”

The man left as the mother parked her vehicle and walked up to his car. The man stayed in his vehicle during the conversation with the child.

The Police Department notified the Burleson school district Wednesday. The district issued an alert to parents Thursday. During the investigation, the Burleson Police Department contacted other law enforcement agencies for assistance or tips that could help solve the case.

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