Man following child home runs off after confronted by another adult, police say

The 12-year-old girl observed the man following her, so she approached a woman at a community mailbox, who scared the man away.


SIOUX FALLS — A Sioux Falls child is safe after being followed home by an unknown man just blocks away from her school.

According to Sioux Falls police spokesman Sam Clemens, a 12-year-old girl was walking home from Ben Reifel Middle School on Friday, Feb. 17, when she observed a man walk away from his vehicle and begin following her in the 3600 block of South Faith Avenue, just across 41st Street from Ben Reifel Middle School.

Clemens said the girl grew concerned and spotted a woman getting her mail at a community mailbox. As the girl approached the woman, the man caught up to the girl, and told the woman that the girl would be coming with him.

The woman told the man that the child would not be going anywhere with him, and the man “took off running,” Clemens said, adding that neither the girl nor the woman knew the man.

Police have reported a handful of calls in recent months involving suspicious individuals attempting to approach children near schools, both before and after school hours, but that the description provided to investigators in this case does not match the description of other recent cases.


Clemens said officers continue to review nearby home surveillance to gather any leads on the man’s identity.

A South Dakota native, Hunter joined Forum Communications Company as a reporter for the Mitchell (S.D.) Republic in June 2021 and now works as a digital reporter for Forum News Service, focusing on local news in Sioux Falls. He also writes regional news spanning across the Dakotas, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
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