Attempted abductions, tight-lipped police leave Morrisville residents on edge

September 17, 2013 5:17:43 PM PDT
A pair of attempted abductions in Morrisville, Bucks County, have alarmed residents about the crimes, but also about the workings of their government and police department.

Last Friday evening a 10-year-old boy was approached by two men in a van, offering him bubble gum.

The boy refused to get in the van and the incident sent a shockwave through the neighborhood.

Resident David Ruiz saw the boy and his father shortly after it happened.

"They're walking back and I heard the father stating [to the boy] what to do in case someone ever tries to abduct him, kick, fight, scream, bite, whatever you have to do to get away," Ruiz said.

Three weeks ago, an 8-year-old girl got away from a would-be abductor by biting his hand.

The police have not issued any warnings to parents.

The officer in charge, Lt. Thomas Herron, wouldn't tell Action News anything at all Tuesday about the latest incident and told me I would have to pay $10 to get a copy of the incident report.

Public information has been hard to come by in Morrisville.

That's because the mayor is suing the police department and police officers are suing each other.

And no one can talk based on the advice of their attorneys.

The latest police chief quit after three weeks on the job, calling the department dysfunctional.

Residents say they don't like being in the dark.

"I think [police notifying parents] would have been a smart idea, especially because being a small town that it is, people would be more on the lookout for each other," resident Liz Cake said.

Others say the lack of information is par for the course.

"I'm not surprised. There's a lot of political stuff going on around this town, not shocked one bit," resident Shelley Vickers said.

Residents aren't feeling safe, and indeed, the departing police chief, who's a former judge and prosecutor, warned the department is headed for "tragedy or catastrophe."

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