Abduction reports 'not true'

9 May 2011, 12:37 | Updated: 9 May 2011, 12:53

Parents are being reassured rumours going round suggesting children have been abducted in Watford are untrue.

Hertfordshire's police say however that since 30 April, they have received seven reports of a man acting suspiciously and approaching children in the North Watford area. 

Police say a man has been arrested in connection with the investigation and released on bail until 23 May 2011, with strict bail conditions.

Heart's been told a dedicated team of officers has been assigned to the investigation continue to work on this operation.  Police are urging anyone with information which they believe could help, to get in contact with them.

Detective Inspector Clare Smith from Watford Local Crime Unit, who is leading the investigation, said: "Although a person has been arrested in connection with these incidents, we would always urge parents and children to continue to be vigilant.

"If anyone sees anything suspicious at all I would urge them to contact police immediately. We would encourage people to be careful and consider some simple personal safety advice, such as making sure you walk with friends and don't talk to or accept lifts from strangers, and always report any suspicious activity."

Anyone with any information is asked to contact Hertfordshire Constabulary on 0845 3300 222.

Police have also released the following advice to children about personal safety:

Stay alert
Ensure you are with someone rather than walk alone
Stick to busy and well-lit areas
Don’t speak to strangers
Avoid short cuts through quiet, unlit, secluded or wooded areas and alleyways
Make sure someone knows where you are going and tell them when you’ve arrived
If you believe someone is following you, go to the nearest busy place, such as a petrol station
Take a mobile phone with you if you have one.