Suspicious woman asking little girls if she can take their picture

By Tara Morgan - bio | email

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - A bizarre request by a suspicious woman in one Chesterfield neighborhood has parents and police on alert. Police say she asked two little girls if she could take their picture as they played in their drive way.

It happened last Monday night on Willow Crest Lane near Beach Road. Police say this should be a reminder to parents to talk to their kids about stranger danger. One of the girls says because of a similar conversation with her mom, she knew exactly what to do.

Playtime for 10 year old Alexis Cheatham and little sister Shelby turned into a frightening ordeal right outside their home. The girls were about to head inside for the evening when a strange woman drove up and made an odd request.

"She kept going back and forth down the road and all of a sudden she just stopped, and all sweet she asks, 'can I take a picture of you and your sister swinging an umbrella in your tutu,'" said Alexis Cheatham.

The girls didn't see a camera.

"We said 'no' and she sat there and sat there," said Alexis.

They bolted for the house and told their mom who used to be a Child Safety Officer for Chesterfield police.

"We teach about stranger danger and that whole picture camera - get close to the car; it just made me feel uncomfortable," said Lisa Cheatham, the girls' mother.

The next morning, Cheatham called the cops and the girls' school. Police say conversations between parents and kids about strangers should start at pre-school age.

"We encourage parents to role play with students of situations that might happen so kids will know how to react," said Mary Garber, Chesterfield Police Child Safety Coordinator.

Cheatham says it's a talk she's had many times and one that may have kept her girls out of harms way.

"You never go near a car. A car is the worst thing possible. They did the right thing and it worked out well, but it could have gone a different way," said Cheatham.

The suspicious woman's car is described as a late model blue four door sedan. If you have information that could help police, call Crime Solvers at 748-0660.

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