Police investigate suspicious incidents in City Parks
Belleville, ON – On the 2nd of July 2018 police were called for a report of suspicious activity. Police responded and spoke with the complainant who advised that they had become concerned with the actions of two people who did not have any children with them, yet were trying to take pictures and selfies with children.
Social media posts regarding the matter have led to conflicting stories about what occurred. The Belleville Police Service want it clearly understood that there is no indication from the complainant that anyone had attempted to abduct any child contrary to social media reports. The complainant was reporting that the behavior was odd and concerning.
Since being posted to social media by numerous people, police have received two additional reports from people reporting similar incidents, both prior to this incident at different parks in the city of Belleville. These two incidents are unrelated and not associated.
These allegations were turned over to the Criminal Investigations Branch for further investigation. On Thursday the 5th of July, the two parties whose photo was posted to social media reached out to the Belleville Police Service and identified themselves. Detectives spoke to the parties who were fully cooperative. Detectives do not believe that the party’s intentions were criminal in nature and are merely a misunderstanding. They have been spoken to and now understand how their interactions could be seen as concerning.
The Belleville Police Service commends our community for being vigilant about their surroundings, but want to caution members of the our community that hyper-vigilance can cause significant or unwanted attention to groups or individuals when misinformation is relayed via social media.
The Belleville Police Service is committed to working for and with the community to make “Belleville the Safest Community in Ontario.”