Police investigate reports of suspicious man at Mason Meijer

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MASON, Mich. (WLNS) – Authorities are looking into several reports of a man approaching women with their children, and following them around the Meijer in Mason.

It all started with several posts to Facebook from mothers, including Allison VanLoon Merkle, who were concerned about similar experiences they had at the Meijer over the weekend.

The women thought they might have been related to human trafficking or child abduction.

“I’m still so shook up about it I cant believe it happened to me of all people,” Merkle said. “He put his hand on my shoulder and kept just talking broken English, and about how to save my daughter I should not be celebrating Halloween. I just kept yelling thank you thank you and he kept following me and getting closer.”

Mason officials say they received 3 reports regarding suspicious activity at the Meijer.

However, Mason City Administrator Deborah Stuart says those reports did not indicate a connection to trafficking, nor an attempted abduction.

“The challenge on social media is you’re trying to do a good deed by sharing information, and that information is good to get out. But we want to get as much detail as possible when we have those facts,” Stuart said.

Authorities want to assure people they are looking into the reports. At this point, that means pulling any available surveillance video to get more information.

But until anything is figured out, the best advice officials can give is to stay vigilant, and if you see something, say something.

“It’s always good to be aware of your surroundings, make sure you’re looking around you, especially as you’re approaching a car or any of those things, and report it to the police as quickly as possible,” Stuart said.

People also posted on social media about similar incidents that happened in the South Lansing Target parking lot.

However, Lansing Police told 6 News Tuesday they hadn’t recieved any reports about those incidents.

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