Former detective issues warning after Melbourne child abduction scare

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A former police detective has urged parents to sit down with their children and talk to them about the threat of strangers approaching them following the alleged attempted abduction of a little girl walking home from school.

Victoria Police say a man in a grey Audi Q3 SUV approached an 11-year-old girl around 2.40pm in Doncaster East in Melbourne’s outer northeast on March 28.

Police believe the man was driving east along Landscape Road when he performed a U-turn and stopped a short distance from the girl.

Investigators have been told the unknown man ordered the girl to get into the vehicle but she managed to run away and hide in nearby bushes.

The girl sought help from a nearby resident and she was not physically injured in the incident.

CCTV footage shows another man, Ryan Ghambari, comforting the girl after the incident, with the little girl saying: “my phone died.”

“When she approached me, she was really shaking,” he told Nine News.

“She couldn’t talk, she couldn’t even breathe.”

Mr Ghambari was walking home with his own daughter and said he witnessed the man tell the girl to get in the car.

Former Victoria Police detective Narelle Fraser said the incident should serve as a reminder to parents about the importance of talking with their children about the threat from strangers.

“Don’t choose a time when the kids are going off to school or to a party, choose the right time (to talk about it),” Ms Fraser told Seven’s Sunrise program on Tuesday.

“Make sure the kids know that anything that happens that is wrong, or if they don’t feel comfortable about, to tell you as a parent, even if they don’t want to tell a parent.

“(Tell them to) tell somebody if they feel scared or if something has happened that they didn’t like.”

Police have released images of the vehicle in question and a man they believe could assist them with their inquiries.

“The man is perceived to be Middle Eastern in appearance with tan skin, black hair, a black beard and a moustache,” police said on Monday

“He was wearing sunglasses with brown lenses, and a grey T-shirt.”

Detective Senior Constable Brooke Miller, speaking with media on Monday, called on the public to help track down the alleged offender.

“She was terrified,” she said.

“She felt like she was going to be taken by this male.

“I’m hoping by giving the description of the man and the car, someone in the area has dashcam footage or information that could help us.”

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