Don’t ever think it can’t happen to your child.
That was the message early Wednesday morning from a family member on social media after two teenage friends from Tillsonburg were located in Calgary.
“No matter how smart, what you have taught them, there are very scary, manipulative professional cons out there. Hold your kids tight. Question everything and ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS.”
On Tuesday, Jan. 12, at approximately 11:40 a.m., the Ontario Provincial Police, Oxford County Detachment received a report of two missing teenagers. The two teens had met an individual online and decided to travel together to Calgary, Alberta, on Monday, Jan. 10.
The parents of both individuals contacted police after realizing their children had in fact left Ontario to meet this unknown person.
As a result, the OPP worked in conjunction with the Calgary Police Service and subsequently located both teens. On Wednesday, they were in the process of returning to Ontario.
“This is a good ending… a little more time and it wouldn’t have been,” said the Tillsonburg family member, who thanked everyone in the community for their quick and heartfelt support during a time of crisis.
If people cannot be supportive on social media, however, the family member urged those people to refrain from making hurtful comments.
The OPP is asking all parents and caregivers to sit down with their children and have a good conversation about online and offline safety and the dangers of meeting strangers online.
“The OPP would also like to thank the Calgary Police Service for their assistance in bringing this investigation to a successful resolution,” said Inspector Tony Hymers, Detachment Commander, Oxford County OPP, in a media release.