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The Forest Preserves Police Department is increasing the number of officers it has patrolling Harms Woods near the northwest portion of Wilmette after a man allegedly offered to pay children on a bike trail in the woods “to change his diaper.”
The department will have additional officers patrolling the woods and bike trails by foot, car and ATV. Forest Preserve police will also increase patrols in Miami Woods and St. Paul Woods in Morton Grove, where the man allegedly made similar requests to children three days later, said Stacina Stagner, communications manager for the Forest Preserves of Cook County.
A child on a bike trail in Harms Woods was approached July 8 by a man riding a bike, who offered the child money to help him change his diaper, according to Sophia Ansari, press secretary for the Cook County Sheriff’s Office.
The incident in Harms Woods was reported to the Forest Preserve Police at about 6:25 p.m. that night.
A similar incident was reported July 11 in Morton Grove.
Between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. that day, a man approached several children on a bike trail between Oakton and Dempster street in Morton Grove, “pulled down his pants and offered the children money to change his diaper,” according to police. The children ran from the area, the release states.
Authorities described the suspect as a 5-foot-10-inch-tall man in his 20s weighing between 170 and 200 pounds. He has brown hair and his face was unshaven at the time of the July 11 incident, the release states. He was last seen wearing a black T-shirt, black jogging pants and black shoes.
Anyone with information is asked to call Cook County Sheriff’s Police detectives at (708) 865-4896.