SOUTH JORDAN — A 9-year-old girl who reported to police that a man tried to abduct her on her way to school admitted four hours later that she made up the story.
Extra police officers had been called to patrol the area around Elk Meadows Elementary School Thursday following a report of an attempted abduction.
A 9-year-old girl was riding her bicycle to school about 8:20 a.m. when she said a man in a white Dodge pickup truck pulled up next to her near 9800 South and 3450 West, rolled down his window and told her, "Get in before I get caught," said Jordan School District spokeswoman Sandy Riesgraf.
The girl also claimed there were two children in the back seat, a boy and a girl about her age, who seemed to be saying, "Help" or "Help me."
The girl told her mother and police that she rode her bike home, hid the bike, went inside her house and called her mother who had left for work.
"She's scared. She doesn't want to come out to recess," her mother told reporters prior to her daughter admitting the lie.
Although the area where the girl claimed the incident occurred is typically a high-traffic area that time of day, Riesgraf said there were no other witnesses to the attempted abduction. All students were accounted for Thursday, she said. The school even called students who had called in sick to make sure they were OK. Parents were also notified of what had happened.
"Police are investigating it as a legitimate abduction attempt," Riesgraf said before the girl changed her story.
After the incident was discovered to be false, the principal sent a letter home to all parents.
"While we regret any unnecessary concern we have caused you, we would rather error on the side of caution in any case that deals with the safety of your children," the letter stated.
There was no immediate word why the girl made up the story or whether disciplinary action would be taken against her. But a spokesman for the Jordan School District noted that it takes "this incident very seriously and is considering all options in regard to discipline of this student."