UPDATE (5:39 PM): Included letter/e-mail from Dr. Zissios, school Principal (see below).
The Alexandria Police Department is investigating an incident that occurred earlier today involving a six-year-old student at Lyles-Crouch Traditional Academy, located at 530 S. Saint Asaph Street in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia.
At approximately 10:15 AM, a male student went to the edge of a fenced playground to retrieve a ball on the other side. The student was approached by an unknown man who lifted him over the fence to retrieve the ball. A teacher saw the child being picked up and challenged the stranger, at which point the man escorted the student to a fence opening to re-enter the playground. The unknown man then left the area. At no time did the unknown man attempt to leave the area with the child.
The man is described as a black male in his 60’s, 6’0” tall, wearing a beige and green shirt and khakis.
The Criminal Investigations Section is continuing to investigate this incident. Anyone with any information is asked to call Detective Alma Zepeda at 703.746.1961.
Dr. Zissios, Principal at the School, sent this letter home and via email today:
Dear LCTA Families,
I wanted to inform you of an incident that occurred at recess today. During a kickball game, a ball was kicked off of the field by a student. A student went to the school fence area to see where the ball had gone. An unknown person lifted the student over the fence to retrieve the ball. A staff member approached the individual and immediately escorted the student back to the playing field. In keeping with school division protocol, the police were notified for investigation and follow-up. The child was unharmed. In light of this incident, we will be reviewing playground safety procedures.
If you have any questions, I may be reached at (703) 706-4430.
Patricia Zissios, Ph.D.