By Bob Uphues
Riverside police say that at least three women have been approached in recent weeks by a man driving a car who engaged them in conversation, saying he was either lost or new to the area and needed some new friends.
The man never exited his vehicle or made physical contact with any of the women, but his actions were unsettling and prompted reports to police.
According to a press release, two of the incidents happened several hours apart on June 6. The first took place at about 2:40 p.m. in the 100 block of Herrick Road, while the second happened in the 300 block of Blythe Road at 7 p.m.
A third incident happened about three weeks ago, but it was not reported to police until June 6 after that person learned another incident had occurred.
In all three cases, however, the women reported the same thing. Each was walking alone when a man driving a newer silver Nissan Sentra pulled up, saying he was either lost or new to town and needed new friends.
Police said the man, described as black, between 20 and 30 years old, possibly with a Jamaican accent, was persistent in talking with the women.
A description of the man has been sent to neighboring police departments, but none has responded with reports of similar incidents. Police Chief Thomas Weitzel encouraged residents who see something or feel that something is suspicious to call police immediately.
Anyone with information regarding the incidents is being asked to call 708-447-2127.
Riverside Police Chief Thomas Weitzel said that the information was not meant to alarm residents but to simply inform them of activity being reported in the community.