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15 September 2014, 13:13
Police in Gloucester are trying to work out whether a man seen holding the hand of a 5-year-old girl had any criminal motivation.
Officers are increasing patrols and warning about the risks of children talking to strangers, after what they call a ''suspicious incident'' on the afternoon of Thursday, September 11th.
Police say a boy found a man holding the hand of a 5-year-old girl, who had gone out of the sight of her family as they walked near Bishop's Castle Way around 3.25pm.
After the boy spoke to the man, it is claimed that he let go of her hand, got into a small black van, and drove off.
Police say the man was black, in his 30s, of thin build and approximately 5ft 8ins tall.
He was wearing a dirty black jumper with black and white arms, green Wellington boots, a flat cap and a necklace.
Police say they are speaking to the girl and her family about what happened, and are trying to establish the nature of the incident.
They are also urging parents to talk to their children about 'stranger danger' and read up on the Kids Aware section of the Gloucestershire Police website.
Detective Inspector David Shore-Nye said: "We are still investigating what happened here and if there was any criminal intent but it is something that should just remind everyone to be on the alert.
"Children and parents should review the advice on our website and anyone who has information on this incident should call us on 101 and quote incident 269 of September 12.
"Local officers will be increasing patrols around the area in response to this incident."