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Common Tricks of Predators

Bribe or Trick
The victim is offered something he or she might want. A young child might be offered candy, a toy, or gum. A teen might be offered money, free food, a ride, or trip to some place exciting. Sometimes a person will take a valued belonging and then offer to return it only if the victim goes with the person, or allows sexual contact.

The Animal Trick
The person is lured away from others by an invitation to play with or receive a gift of a puppy or kitten, or some other cute or unusual animal.

The Emergency Trick
A person pretends that a fire, accident, illness, death, or some other emergency has happened to the victim's family, home, or friend. The person then says there was a change in plans, and he/she was to pick them up because the prearranged ride was cancelled.

The Help Trick
Someone asks the child or teen for help. They may ask for directions, to use the phone, to carry heavy bags, or to search for someone or something lost, like a pet, child, or money.

The Friend Trick
A person pretends to know the family and says the child's parents have asked them to come and give the child a ride home.

The Bad Child Trick
A person accuses the child / teen of doing something wrong. The child / teen is ordered to go with the person. Sometimes a real-looking badge or ID is shown as fake proof of the predator's official status.

The Flattery Trick
Posing as a photographer, a person might ask the victim to go with them, so pictures or a video can be taken.

The Open the Door Trick
The person tricks the victim into opening the house door or car door. The person might look like a repair person, or says they need to use the phone, or deliver a package, or needs help or directions. Sometimes a minor car accident is staged to get the victim to pull the car over and open the car door.

The Secret Trick
Sometimes victims are warned to keep physical and sexual harassment or assault a secret.  Often the victimization continues because the victim is afraid these threats might be true.

Networking Trick
Children and teens have been lured into dangerous situations by people using computer online services to make contact. The communication usually start as a harmless exchange; then the predator asks for a face-to-face meeting, or the messages become increasingly sexual in content.

Additional Resources
Please share these tips with your family and friends. These tips and other safety information are available from the following organizations:
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