JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - After hours of investigating a report of a man trying to lure a child into his car Wednesday afternoon on the Westside, police believe it wasn't what it seemed.
Jacksonville Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Melissa Bujeda said a 14-year-old boy told police Wednesday afternoon that he saw a car with an elderly man attempt to grab a white boy possibly between 6 and 8 years old near the Family Dollar store on Wilson Boulevard at Aldington Drive.
It was originally reported by police that according to the teen, the elderly man tried to lure the boy with a stuffed animal and tried to pull him into the vehicle. Bujeda said the teen then told the child to run.
The teen then walked a good distance before Bujeda said he was able to get with an adult and tell them what happened. Police were then called.
Bujeda said Wednesday night that this case is not being investigated as a possible abduction, and that a frail elderly man was simply passing out stuffed animals to kids.
Bujeda said police got an accurate vehicle description and located the vehicle and the man inside, but she said they did not find the boy. Bujeda said the man fully cooperated with police.
Contact with the boy has not yet been made but at this time, Bujeda said police are confident that the man did not have bad intentions.
The boy was wearing a Spiderman backpack, black and white clothing and sandals. He also has dark hair.
"We are unsure at this time where the child is, if the child ran away from the individual or what the situation is," Bujeda said.
She said police are asking anyone in the area who may have had a child fitting the boy's description who was walking down the road to contact police.
Bujeda said there were no reports of missing children.
"The child may be home with his parents right now," Bujeda said. "The child could be scared if it did arrive back at home and may not be telling the parents exactly what happened."
She said police applaud the 14-year-old for doing the right thing and reporting the incident.
There were numerous stuffed animals seen in the car (as pictured above).
Bujeda later said police spoke to the elderly man's family, who said he likes to collect stuffed animals and hand them out to kids.
Police were still pouring all resources into the scene, but they said it was not a crime scene because there was no crime.
Anyone who has any information about the identity of the child is asked to call the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office at 904-630-0500.
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