Teen says stranger helped her when men tried to lure her into car

PORTSMOUTH, Ohio (WSAZ) — Police in Portsmouth, Ohio say they are looking into a report of two men who may have tried to lure a 14-year-old girl into a vehicle.

Aliyah Steele said it happened late last week.

“I went to turn on Vinton and I was on that corner, and a blue car pulled up to me and they was like, ‘Come here,'” said Steele.

Steele says she refused to get in the car. She thought maybe the men were mistaking her for someone else.

The teen says the men appeared to be in their 40s and were total strangers.

“They stopped again and they turned around and pushed the back door open,” said Steele. “They was like, ‘Get in!'”

Steele says it became obvious the men weren’t taking no for an answer. She says one of them even looked like he was about to get out of the car.

“When you’re in that situation and it does start to get serious, it’s very scary and it gets to a point it scared me so much I didn’t even know what to do,” Steele said. “If that lady wasn’t out there, if I didn’t have something to turn to real quick, I wouldn’t have known what to do. I probably would have got picked up.”

It was at the same moment the man was getting out of the car that Steele says another person she didn’t know, a woman, walked outside onto her porch to smoke a cigarette. Steele yelled to her.

“I was like, ‘They’re trying to get me in their car. Oh my God,'” Steele said. “I walked over to her and they pulled off real fast and she continued to walk me home.”

Steele says that woman walked her all the way home and then even came back later to say she saw the men circling the block a few more times.

“Even if it was just something little, she didn’t intentionally do it, she could have saved my life,” Steele said.

She describes the car as a blue Ford Focus with a handicap sign in the windshield.

Now, she is encouraging other people to take situations like this seriously.

“People our age definitely, even older or younger or males, need to take it a lot more serious than we do take it,” Steele said.

Portsmouth Police Chief Robert Ware says they are looking into the report.

“You can’t dismiss a claim like this because you never know what the intent of the people in the car were,” Ware said.

He also provided tips for avoiding an abduction. Police say the incident should serve as a reminder to all to take precautions when walking, especially during hours of darkness.

“You want to take somebody with you,” Ware said. “Let somebody know where you’re going. Have a means to call for help if necessary.”

Here are even more safety measures you should take:

– Always be aware of your surroundings
– Never walk or jog alone
– Let others know where you are going and when you plan to arrive or return
– Walk or jog against the flow of traffic so you can see approaching vehicles
– Walk or jog in well lit or high traffic areas as much as possible
– Have a cell phone with you
– If using ear buds, maintain a low volume so you can hear around you
– Never approach strangers, especially in a vehicle
– Report suspicious activities to law enforcement authorities

Read the original version of this article at wsaz.com.

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