LONGMONT, Colo. (CBS4)– The quick action, and feet, of some Longmont kids helped keep them safe and led to an arrest. Wednesday morning before school near Eagle crest Elementary three kids told police they were being chased by a man near the campus.
“Our school resource officers responded to the area and located a suspect that had been following and ultimately chasing some kids in the area there,” said Longmont Police Department Detective Commander Jeff Satur.
Dayle Charles Decker was arrested and charged with three counts each of harassment and child abuse. Decker, 30, also goes by the name Chris. Online court records show he has arrests for drugs and similar cases of harassing and stalking, but only one guilty plea for harassing by telephone from September of 2009.
Longmont police say Decker lived in the area with his mother.
“I run on that trail all the time by myself, very scary,” said Laura Hickey, a parent at Eagle Crest. “To run away from somebody that’s pretty scary.”
Longmont Police say officers will increase patrols around schools.
The St. Vrain Valley School District sent this note to parents:
Dear Parents & Guardians:
At approximately 7:55 this morning, a suspicious adult male was spotted on the bike path NE of the Eagle Crest Elementary. A few students were chased by the adult male.
The students were able to get to the school safely and law enforcement was contacted immediately. Law enforcement officers located the adult male and placed him into custody.
I encourage you to take this opportunity to speak with your children about the dangers of speaking to strangers or falling prey to tricks designed to fool children into going with a stranger.
We want to thank the Longmont Police Department for their quick response.
Jeff Todd joined the CBS4 team in 2011 covering the Western Slope in the Mountain Newsroom. Since 2015 he’s been working across the Front Range in the Denver Headquarters. Follow him on Twitter @CBS4Jeff.