We Have a White Van Stranger Danger Problem in Mid-Michigan, Warn Your Kids
Many parents and concerned Flint-area residents have reported multiple incidents involving people in a white van trying to lure kids inside.
Beginning early last week, reports about the white van began going wild in Flint area Facebook groups. Some were even able to get photos of the van in question. The scariest part is that I've seen at least 4 pictures of different white vans. Here are some of the things people have been posting about:
An incident near Howell, which has been confirmed by multiple news outlets
This incident that happened in Fenton
On one of these threads, someone simply shared this photo without comment
This incident reported today, but pictures have yet to be posted
As you can see, it's getting pretty nuts in Mid-Michigan. In the past few weeks, we've reported on a couple of similar incidents in Genesee County -- one in Clio and another in Grand Blanc. So what does it all mean? Well, it could mean a lot of things, but here's what I think are the two most likely scenarios:
- There were a few legitimate incidents with a white van and everyone else is just freaking out/crying wolf
- There are multiple creeps out there, and they just happen to all have white vans
Some have also said that the culprits are the same creeps renting different white vans, and that's why they're hard to keep tabs on or track down. That could just be comment section BS... but who knows?
None of these scenarios are ideal, but no matter how you cut it -- we have a problem in Genesee County and Mid-Michigan. You add that to the as-of-yet undetermined amount of missing women in Flint and reports of area human trafficking traps and we have either a major problem or a perfect storm of internet fear-mongering... and a major problem.
As we've mentioned before, Michigan is a known target for human traffickers. Even though some of these reports are hard to confirm, it's better to be safe than to be human trafficked. Be sure to talk to your kids about stranger danger, and warn them not only of the white van, but also the overall threat of being approached by someone in a vehicle. And if you're a female, please be aware of your surroundings and do your best to steer clear of potentially dangerous situations.