Beach Hazard issued for some lakeshore counties until 8 p.m. Sunday

Sheriff: Girl ‘admitted to fabricating’ story of May 8 child enticement in Richfield

RICHFIELD — Officials with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office on Wednesday, May 27 offered an update on a child enticement incident reported May 8 in Richfield — indicating the victim “admitted to fabricating the story to authorities.”

Sheriff’s officials said it was originally reported the girl was approached by a man near Whispering Ridge Drive and Scenic Drive who attempted to abduct her and then fled the area in a brown van.

A weekslong investigation revealed “several inconsistencies in the juvenile’s story,” officials said.

She was confronted Wednesday at the sheriff’s office and admitted “that at no time did a man approach her and attempt to abduct her.”

Officials said she indicated a man was walking down the road in her direction from a distance and that she believes she heard him say, “Come here.”  She said that she became fearful and ran from the area.

There is no credible threat in this case, sheriff’s officials said, noting they are no longer looking for anyone or any vehicle in relation to this report.

“We take all reports seriously and dedicate all necessary resources to the pursuit of justice,” sheriff’s officials said in the release. “We received an almost overwhelming response from the community in this case and all leads were looked into.  We are appreciative of the community response to this incident and are saddened by the fear, anger, and uncertainly that this report caused within our community.  If any good can come of it, it allowed many families to have important discussions with their children about real dangers that are out there and will hopefully initiate conversations about the importance of truthfulness.”

Sheriff’s officials noted it is a crime to file a false police report in the State of Wisconsin.  However, in this case no criminal action will be taken based on the girl’s age and lack of prior contact with law enforcement.

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