Posted on: February 2, 2017

UPDATE: EGR Public Safety Issues Safety Warning

Police Car Lights

As you may have heard, there was an incident on Wednesday, Feb. 1 involving two children who reported concerns over a van in the Woodcliff Drive and Maplewood area.

After an investigation, the East Grand Rapids Public Safety Department confirmed this incident poses no threat. The van in question was actually a service vehicle on a regular route. The driver honked the horn to alert the kids, who were in the road, of his presence. Additionally, the driver waved at the homeowner whose house he was leaving. The children interpreted these actions as the driver trying to lure him into his van. In the end, this was a misinterpretation of events.

Through great conversations with the children’s parents, Public Safety was able to make this determination. While the initial information was misinterpreted, we applaud the children’s awareness and quick response to a situation where they felt threatened. Everyone involved in this incident acted exactly as they should.

The City of East Grand Rapids Public Safety Department is dedicated to providing quick communication with residents on issues that arise. The release of this information upon our initial learning of the issue is standard procedure.

We appreciate the community’s help in spreading this message. The East Grand Rapids Public Schools were extremely helpful in sharing this safety alert with parents of students.

If you have any questions about this incident, please feel free to contact Public Safety at 616.949.7010.



The East Grand Rapids Public Safety Department is warning residents to watch out for a man driving a red van with a white stripe trying to lure children into his vehicle.

During the afternoon of Wednesday, Feb. 1, a man described as a white male in his 40s with a grey beard and glasses attempted to coax two children into his van in the Woodcliff Drive and Maplewood area.

The two children ran and were unharmed.

The department is currently working with other agencies in the area to find the perpetrator. Anyone with information can contact the East Grand Rapids Public Safety Department at 616.949.7010.

East Grand Rapids Public Schools have been notified and a notice will be sent to parents. Parents are encouraged to remind their children to be cautious of strangers. 

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