I’m writing to share a disturbing incident that occurred in the park around 4 pm on Monday afternoon. While kids were playing in the house structure by the jungle gym (near the splash pad) in the Lafayette park, they reported being approached by an older white male with gray hair. He called out to the students and then exposed himself to them. The kids saw the man in the bushes by the alley and behind the park. After he exposed himself, he then walked behind the garages in the alley behind the park.
The parents of the students have made a report with MPD. I have also notified our DCPS school police, as well as our staff. While this incident did not happen on school grounds during school hours, it certainly is important that we are all aware and vigilant with supervision.
As a few reminders:
- Stay vigilant with supervision. Please remind your nannies and care givers to supervise children closely.
- Teach children to trust their instincts and tell a trusted adult whenever a situation feels “off”.
- Talk to your children about safe adults and how to find them in a public space.
- More detailed resources can be found here: “Protecting Against Child Predators”
Please don’t hesitate to let me know if you have any questions. Please stay safe, stay vigilant, and above all else, talk to your kids. Don’t assume they would know what to do in this situation. Talk to them explicitly, instill confidence (not fear), and reinforce the importance of talking to adults about situations. This is also a great article on how to talk to your child: “How to Teach your Child About Personal Safety”.
Please be safe,