Police ask for public's help to identify school bus stop stalker - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Police ask for public's help to identify school bus stop stalker

WHITEHOUSE, TX (KLTV) -

Authorities are asking for the public's help to find a man they say has been approaching children at a school bus stop.

Smith County Sheriff's Officials say an Hispanic man, around 30, drove up to the bus stop near Whitehouse and started asking questions to a 15-year-old female student. Wednesday, the girl's mother confronted the man with a gun, and he hasn't been seen at the stop since.

“There’s no way to know what the intentions of someone like this are, I would suspect they’re not good, I mean he stopped at a school bus stop and engaged in conversation with an underage girl,” John Moore, Public Information Officer with the Smith County Sheriff’s Office, said.

After releasing surveillance video of the man's van near the bus stop, though, he hasn't been seen.

“However, that doesn’t mean that this individual won’t try this again,” Moore said.

The Whitehouse School District is taking precautions and urging parents to watch their children closely.

“We encourage students to let the bus drivers know to let their teachers or administrators know if they have concerns about their safety, they have to tell us about it, they have to let us know,” Daniel Dupree, Whitehouse Independent School District's Superintendent, said.

Police are asking the same thing. Whitehouse bus drivers have been asked to be on alert for that silver van and to report anything suspicious, but according to police, much of this investigation is up to the public.

“Following all the leads that we can possibly get and that’s why we count on the public to let us know if you see anything new, something that we don’t already know, it could be the piece that we need to find this person,” Moore said.

Whitehouse ISD's school resource officer, Corporal Jason Westbrook, has also been stopping by school bus stops.

“We just have to show presence and just have everybody be on the lookout for everything, try to make it a community thing, where everybody’s watching each other,” he said.

Though neighbors near County Road 2228, where that van was first spotted last week, are on edge, police are confident the extra presence is working.

“I’m pretty sure he’s not going to be around there anymore,” Corporal Westbrook said.

Investigators do have partial license plates for the vehicle, but at this point are still searching for more information.

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