The San Angelo Police Department is investigating multiple incidents related to several viral social media posts concerning two white males who are allegedly attempting to lure children into a red older-model Ford Ranger pickup truck as well as several posts inciting physical retaliation against the men.
Yesterday, the Department received several reported sightings of the men and truck from the viral social media posts in and around various locations in San Angelo. Our officers responded to each reported sighting. Both men, who appear to be suffering from an unknown cognitive impairment, were located and identified and investigations into the reported incidents ensued.
In a possible act of so-called vigilante justice, one of the accused men, age 41, was assaulted late last night at a local gas station during an altercation with three men who recognized him from the viral posts. The man was later treated for a broken jaw. The suspects have not been located. The incident is under investigation.
To date, officers have spoken with several complainants who alleged the two men have been acting suspiciously and following children and women; however, no incidents of attempted abduction have been reported.
Although none of the reported local incidents have risen to a violation of Texas law thus far, we can assure you that the safety and welfare of our citizens is paramount and our officers are exploring every possible avenue within legal guidelines to halt the activity.
We cannot stress enough the importance of reporting suspicious behavior when it is occurring. Sometimes, people are reluctant to call 911 about behavior that they feel is suspicious or they choose to post on social media before calling authorities. The San Angelo Police Department wants to remind our citizens that reporting suspicious activity immediately can help police prevent or interrupt crime.
The Department is also cautioning members of the public to refrain from approaching the men and taking matters into their own hands.
If you or someone you know has had a recent encounter with the men, please contact the San Angelo Police Department as soon as possible at (325) 657-4315 to file an incident report.
These are ongoing investigations and more information will be released when it becomes available.