.

UPDATE: Stranger Encounter Has Fairlands Elementary On Alert

No crime was committed, but school, support staff and parents are making sure they have safety procedures in place

Updated as of 7:00 a.m. on Nov. 17:

Parents at a Pleasanton school have been alerted to a suspicious incident that occurred on campus.

A car drove by the open gate at Fairlands Elementary on the West Las Positas side of the school on Nov. 6.

The car was reportedly driven by a woman and occupied by a male teenager who offered a nearby student candy to get in the car. The student did not go with the stranger and reported the incident to his mother.

According to the letter, the Fairlands staff reported to incident to Pleasanton Police.

The Principal of Fairlands Elementary sent out the following letter to parents:

Dear Parents, 

We want to inform you about an incident that occurred at approximately 3:10 on Wednesday, November 7th. A Fairlands student was outside the gate that opens onto West Las Positas. An older woman, in a "white or light blue" car, was driving by with a teenager. The car slowed down and the teenager told the student if he got into the car, he would give him candy. The student immediately walked to his mom who was a few feet away and told her what happened. Meanwhile, the car continued driving and did not stop. The student and parent returned to the school and the police were called. The police arrived a few minutes later and took a report. Fairlands Elementary is making every effort to secure our campus and ensure that the safety of our students is our first priority. We are working with the Pleasanton School District, Police Department, Y-Kids, and Fairlands Staff, and Parent Volunteers to be sure that we have all the necessary safety procedures in place.

This incident provides a great opportunity for families to talk about safety measures. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us. 

Sincerely,

Julie Berglin Interim Principal Fairlands Elementary

Pleasanton Police Lt. Jeffery Bretzing confirmed the incident and said officers searched the surrounding areas but were not able to find any people or cars matching the suspect described by the student.

Bretzing wrote:

"No crime occurred and it was documented as an incident. The only difference is our report indicated it took place on 11/6/12 at 1510 hours.  Also, the vehicle did not stop and a rear passenger was the one who reportedly made the comment to the student. There were no other witnesses to the comment being made. As always, we treat these types of incidents very seriously and work with the school district to help ensure the safety of the students and staff."

Pleasanton Unified School District Superintendent Parvin Ahmadi wrote:

"The Pleasanton Unified School District takes the safety of our students and staff seriously. Parents were informed about the report and the Police Department was contacted. We always work closely with the Police Department to assess the situation and notify parents and schools as needed."

The Pleasanton Unified School District issued this comment:

"When an incident happens at a school site, we contact the police to make a report (we are all mandated reporters).  We work closely with them to determine if there is a threat to safety for our students & staff and will send an email to surrounding schools or to the whole district if deemed appropriate. If an incident is not a threat, but just something that made a student uncomfortable, we still contact the police to file a report, but do not send out a district-wide email, as that would unneccessarily incite panic.   

The incident at Fairlands was not deemed a threat.  As the police reported to you, "No crime occurred and it was documented as an incident" and the parent of the student was a few feet away. Since that was the case, there was no need to send a district-wide email about the incident.  We believe this incident was handled appropriately."

Douglas Linman November 15, 2012 at 05:59 PM
It's probably time for a high and wide angle hidden camera focused clear on the front area that is set to automatically record morning and dismissals only, to a hard drive, then erase each month if nothing occurred. This is sad, but serious consideration should be taken, knowing that this sick 2 person team is about or any copy cats.
ptowngrown November 15, 2012 at 06:08 PM
Aren't there street cameras at the Santa Rita road/West Las Positas intersection? They should look back at those cameras and see if there was a car matching the description entering/leaving around that time.
anon November 15, 2012 at 06:19 PM
Glad this was made public in a timely fashion (sarcasism). Maybe when the police report was made PPD could have notified the Patch & PW. Someone may have seen something and it would be fresh in their minds....not likely a week later.
Jen November 15, 2012 at 07:16 PM
Why doesn't this type of incident get reported to all schools in the area? I'm sure the police can send a mass email to all the school directors and let the schools handle disseminating to parents. Or at least all the schools can communicate with each other on these type of incidents.
Michael Austin November 16, 2012 at 01:35 AM
This article reminds me of an incident at Highland Oaks and Muirwood Drive. It was the first day of school 2007, I was on my hand powered bike, I saw a women in a ratty looking car offering candy to the children just after class was let out. The womens hair looked ratty also. I rushed home as fast as I could hand pedal and called the police. I provided a partial license plate to the police, unfortunately it was not enough to trace it out. An officer came by my home later and discussed the incident. This recent incedent is a good reminder to all of us, that we need to burst the bubble we live in, that there is crime in our community, we all need to be alert.
Sara November 16, 2012 at 02:15 AM
My daughter was walking home today and a teenage boy was walking by her and asked her if he thought she was following her. When I met her halfway she.told me about him and I could not find him. He was behind her then gone. Was and description given cause my daughter told me everything about.this kid I would like to know if this is the same guy.
Sara November 16, 2012 at 02:16 AM
My daughter was walking home on Valley from PMS.
Sara November 16, 2012 at 02:51 AM
The police are coming to speak with my daughter. They have.no description of the people. There was no police involved. Fairlands sent letters home but never contacted the police. Major foul Fairlands
Ron Esteller November 16, 2012 at 05:56 PM
I brought this information to the attention of the Patch, it was given to me by one of my students parents at Fairlands, and luckily the Patch editor's children also train with me, so I felt this information HAD to be shared! (Thanks Autumn for getting this out) I find it reprehensible that it was not shared with every school, not just Fairlands. As a family member of a kidnap/murdered child I look for and take these incidents seriously, I have spent most off my adult like helping children prepare for these types off encounters because, @Michael, yes, it can, and DOES happen even here, Estellermartialartspleasanton.com
Pleasanton Mom November 17, 2012 at 12:47 AM
Shame on garlands and PUSD. How dare they withhold this information. We all watch out got our own kids and other kids and we deserve to know when these things happen. We parents are a protective group and had they said something, it would not have surprised me if other parents would have remembered something and come forward. But this far out, memories fade especially if you don't know what you are seeing. PUSD needs to explain themselves.
Dennis Duarte November 22, 2012 at 03:33 PM
Let me just say this. Have someone grab your wrist, or grab you from behind and start dragging you away, would you know what to do? If not, come by the dojo and watch what we do. If you child trains in the arts, walk up to him or her unexpectedly and grab them by the wrist or from behind and ask them, What would you do? IF they tell you something, then make them do it on you. If they get out, smile and congratulate them. If not, come by the dojo and watch what we do. If you or your child feels insecure or scared. Come by the dojo and watch what we do. If you or your child are being bullied. Come by the dojo and watch what we do. You noticed that all my answers were for you to come and watch what we do and not come and sign up, or anything like that. The reason that I have stated it the manner that I have is because we want you to want to be a part of our Ohana, and the only true way to have this happen is for you to first, come watch what we do. Then you talk to Sifu Ron or Sifu DJ and then you decide if Kajukenbo and EMA is right for you. I have known Sifu Ron for over 25 years, I am a friend, a student, a parent of a student, and a long time Pleasanton resident. I encourage all of you who read this and have an interest in learning how to protect yourself or your family, or are interested in the Martial Arts to come by and see what we do. Talk to us and most importantly, talk to the students and their parents. Then make your decision.
Dennis Duarte November 22, 2012 at 03:35 PM
Let me just say this. Have someone grab your wrist, or grab you from behind and start dragging you away, would you know what to do? If not, come by the dojo and watch what we do. If you child trains in the arts, walk up to him or her unexpectedly and grab them by the wrist or from behind and ask them, What would you do? IF they tell you something, then make them do it on you. If they get out, smile and congratulate them. If not, come by the dojo and watch what we do. If you or your child feels insecure or scared. Come by the dojo and watch what we do. If you or your child are being bullied. Come by the dojo and watch what we do. You noticed that all my answers were for you to come and watch what we do and not come and sign up, or anything like that. The reason that I have stated it the manner that I have is because we want you to want to be a part of our Ohana, and the only true way to have this happen is for you to first, come watch what we do. Then you talk to Sifu Ron or Sifu DJ and then you decide if Kajukenbo and EMA is right for you. I have known Sifu Ron for over 25 years, I am a friend, a student, a parent of a student, and a long time Pleasanton resident. I encourage all of you who read this and have an interest in learning how to protect yourself or your family, or are interested in the Martial Arts to come by and see what we do. Talk to us and most importantly, talk to the students and their parents. Then make your decision.

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