The Omaha Police Dept. are investigating a frightening situation for a young girl in northwest Omaha who told her parents that a man tried to lure her into his truck.
Police were called at about 5pm Wednesday for a possible child enticement case in a neighborhood northwest of 150th & W. Dodge Rd.
An 8-year-old girl says she was riding her bike, waiting for a friend, when a man outside a turquoise pickup motioned her to come over and asked if she wanted to play "beat the kids" with him. The girl kept telling the man "no", sped home, and her parents called police.
Police arrest Steven Levy, 56, for felony child enticement.
The girl's mother, who didn't want to be identified, says her daughter is a smart, brave girl and she prepared her for these situations.
"It's not something you expect, I'm trying to help her be independent and go out and ride her bicycle and then something like this happens and then it's very difficult for me to let her do that," the mother said.
Levy told police he was saying “hi.” A friend at the home where Levy was arrested tells KMTV Action 3 News it's a misunderstanding and he was helping take items to Goodwill.
"She was trembling when she came home she was very scared, and she is a brave kid but she would not say that if it did not happen,” the mother noted.
Levy is at the Douglas County Jail and he is waiting to see a judge.
Gene Klein, the Executive Director of Project Harmony, says now is when more kids play outside and are approached more often for enticement. Klein says talk to your kids about what to do if someone approaches, how to get away, and who to call.
"Make sure you know where your kids are especially after school or early evenings before it gets dark, if they're going to the playground or if they're going to a friend's house what's the route they're going to take, how do they get there?” Klein described.
Klein explains to make sure that your kids are not wearing earphones, and that they can see cars coming and going. Also, making sure children have a cell phone is a big help. Project Harmony says parents should let kids know that you're watching and being vigilant by driving them to school or a friends’ house more often.
Project Harmony has free classes and more information on their website under the “Training Tab.” Go to: http://projectharmony.com/