WINNIPEG — Winnipeg police are investigating after a stranger allegedly followed a student into a school after she was dropped off last week.
Pembina Trails School Division and police said the incident occurred on Friday at approximately 8:20 a.m. at Ecole Dieppe. They said a stranger followed a female student into the school, and had a brief conversation with her before leaving.
“Our video surveillance camera shows that the person opened the door, and went into the school,” said Ted Fransen, superintendent of the school division. “We have no surveillance cameras inside the school, so we don’t have any video of what happened in the gym. We are led to believe there was a quick conversation between the intruder and the student. The person didn’t get any closer than two metres to the student, and left.”
The student informed her parents in the evening, who quickly phoned the school, Fransen said. The principal of Ecole Dieppe sent a letter out to the community over the weekend about the event. Fransen said the division sent a second letter out on Monday, expressing regret for not having been more “upfront” about the incident.
“We should have shared more information than we had in the Sunday letter,” he said.
Fransen said the division is now reviewing its door lock procedures and is in the process of upgrading security.
“We also had our safety officer come and do a safety audit of the school,” he said.
Fransen added supports are being made available to students who need it.
Winnipeg police confirmed on Thursday they have increased their presence in the area.
“It’s a pretty disturbing incident,” Const. Rob Carver said. “I don’t think you need to be a parent to get the sense that this is very concerning.”
Carver said officers are not aware of anything similar happening at other schools in the city. He said officers are not immediately sharing the description of the stranger yet.
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