A child’s quick-thinking potentially saved her life as well as the lives of her younger cousins when a stranger impersonating a police officer approached them in Lowell, Massachusetts.
At approximately 4 p.m. Tuesday, the three children were at a school bus stop near the intersection of Central and Crosby Streets when an intoxicated man approached them, according to the Lowell Police Department.
"He looked down at one of my cousins and said, 'Should I take you or her?' And that’s when I pulled away from him and I said, 'What are you doing?'" one of the victims said when she spoke with NBC10 Boston and necn.
The man insisted he was an officer and told the children to go with him, Lowell police said. He even asked if they wanted to go to jail. All three children, who were not named, instead walked away towards their home.
"That's when I grabbed my cousins and I walked up the street to get away from him," the eldest child said.
The impostor was not wearing a uniform, but a black beanie and a leather jacket.
One of the younger children targeted by the man said he is thankful for his cousin’s quick-thinking.
"I felt kind of relieved because if we weren’t that smart, I probably wouldn’t be here today," he said.
The mother of the eldest child said she always prepared her daughter for a moment like this.
"We always talk to them about stranger danger," the mother said. "I hope he does face some sort of charge because you don’t just go up to kids you don’t know and grab them."
Lowell police are continuing their investigation on the suspicious encounter and they say they have a person of interest.