Terrified Mums Alert Police to Supermarket Kid-Snatching Gang

Readers — I hear that this ytysddtked
 has gone viral, and why wouldn’t it? It’s about two Scottish moms who felt they were being followed around the supermarket by guys who wanted to kidnap their kids. (That is: Two separate moms felt this, about eight months apart, a separate supermarkets. But surely that still constitutes a trend?) How could these women TELL what was up? Did they see a gun, or handcuffs, or maybe a flash of grocery list: “Bread, milk, baby”?

Oh wait — HERE’S how the ladies knew these men were out to steal their babies IN PUBLIC, the way so many people…don’t:

TWO terrified mums say they were targeted by a child abduction gang as they took their kids shopping.

Police are investigating claims a woman was stalked by two men in an Asda branch in Linwood, Renfrewshire, on Tuesday.

The pair are said to have ran off after being challenged by security staff before being driven away in a van with foreign number plates.

After details of the incident emerged on social media, another mum contacted the Sunday Mail and revealed she had been targeted in a similar incident in February.

She said she was followed by two men, who she described as “middle Eastern appearance” as she shopped with her three-year-old daughter at the Tesco store in Springburn, Glasgow.

The woman said: “I noticed these two men following me and staring at my daughter. I was so alarmed I placed her between myself and the shopping trolley.

“I kept seeing them round the store. I couldn’t get away from them.

“They were staring at my daughter with no focus on me. I was 100 per cent convinced they were going to try to take her.

Well, 100% convinced is certainly reason enough to call the police! And even though we’re talking about two incidents in which men who did NOT snatch a child from the supermarket, that doesn’t mean those ladies didn’t encounter a “supermarket snatch gang,” does it? So what if it’s also the world’s FIRST supermarket snatch “gang?”

Reason enough to alarm all the other mums in Britain! Go, mums! Go, media! Go meds — what we need to deal with the anxiety released into the air like evil aromatherapy on a daily basis! – L

Don't look now, but there's a MAN in that store!

Why is that MAN going down the same aisle as me and my precious child? 

, , , , , , , , , ,

71 Responses to Terrified Mums Alert Police to Supermarket Kid-Snatching Gang

  1. Brooks October 20, 2014 at 3:15 pm #

    While the police have never been called, I get these terrified looks all the time in stores. As a middle aged guy with grayish hair, I certainly fit the expected profile of a bad guy, out to do harm to someone’s kid. Even when I’m with one or both of my kids. The startled look as I menacingly grab that box of cereal or a bottle of wine for my wife. The jerk as I walk by with that terrifying gallon of milk. Yep, that’s me, the evil and menacing middle-aged dad.

  2. SKL October 20, 2014 at 3:25 pm #

    That second report would have been attacked as racist here in the USA.

    I know kids do get kidnapped. I am in favor of moms trusting their judgement and keeping their kids closer when they have a strong feeling that someone is up to no good. Of course that does not translate to “every mom needs to be afraid in the grocery store.”

  3. Sylv October 20, 2014 at 3:27 pm #

    “I kept seeing them round the store. I couldn’t get away from them.”

    So going up and down shopping aisles in a logical manner is suspicious? Maybe to alleviate concerns, we should all pick aisles at random. Go down aisle 1, come up aisle 5, double back to aisle 2, followed by aisle 8. And for goodness sake, nobody better run the same pattern! If I see you more than twice in the same aisle, I’m calling the police.

  4. Stacy October 20, 2014 at 3:28 pm #

    Funny I should read this two days after an excellent trip to the grocery store with my first grader who impressed me by offering to go get an item I forgot from the other side of the store and actually coming back with exactly the right brand and type of peanuts. I apologized for doubting her. She kept saying, “I’m really growing up!” Good thing I wasn’t worried she’d be kidnapped. A generation ago, our local grocery had a play area where moms left their kids unsupervised while they shopped. It’s gone now, of course.

  5. kate October 20, 2014 at 3:33 pm #

    I am no longer a fan of “trust your instincts”. As we have seen on this site and elsewhere, the media has many believing that danger is around every corner and we must be ever vigilant. Many have no longer sense of the difference between a friendly hello and a menacing attempt at kidnapping.

  6. Michelle October 20, 2014 at 3:35 pm #

    Like SKL, I believe in the value of gut feelings and intuition when it comes to recognizing that someone may have bad intentions, but I think that most people today have their guts all twisted out of shape by paranoia.

    There’s a mom from one of my kids’ activities who lives in a nice, upscale, gated community in the same already safe area where I live (in a regular, non-gated neighborhood.) She’s always talking about danger everywhere, and is convinced that bad guys are just waiting to storm her home as soon as the community security guards aren’t looking. So when she freaked out about a man at the park with us, I’m sorry, I have absolutely no faith in her assurance that he gave off at “bad vibe.” If you think they’re all out to get you, you’re going to get a bad vibe off of everyone.

  7. Ravana October 20, 2014 at 3:39 pm #

    Why were these women both incapable of loudly saying, “Excuse me. Why are you staring at my child?” If they truly feared for the child’s safety you’d think they’d confront the threats in good mama bear fashion.

  8. SKL October 20, 2014 at 3:39 pm #

    If moms in the UK were all convinced that there is a creep around every corner and they all want YOUR kid, then there would have been a lot more than 2 reports.

    To deny that there are bad guys just because a kidnapping didn’t happen those times is not any more sensible than to believe every guy is a bad guy.

    To me, the question is, how do we get back to our basic instinct to sense real danger and protect against it?

  9. Laura October 20, 2014 at 3:41 pm #

    I have had this happen to me in the grocery store and it was a horrible feeling. I was shopping with my daughters, age 4 and 2 at the time, and I was largely pregnant. A man who had no shopping cart and no items, was following us through the aisles, stopping a few paces behind us whenever I would stop, picking things off the shelf to look at and put them back, and was clearly watching us out of the corner of his eye. I don’t know what his intentions were but it was creepy. I went to the front of the store and told the manager and asked for an escort to my car. She said “I know who it is, we have had similar complaints about him before.” Anyway, we safely left the parking lot, and I don’t know if he was asked to leave or police called etc. I was thankful to have been paying attention to my surroundings and my intuition. I felt like I handled it appropriately, and treated it as an isolated incident.

  10. MichaelF October 20, 2014 at 3:46 pm #

    If the media doesn’t tell me about the bad stuff going on how am I supposed to know to be afraid enough so I can watch the media and be informed about the bad stuff going on?


  11. SKL October 20, 2014 at 3:50 pm #

    The media doesn’t have to tell you to get bad vibes. They are natural (albeit rare).

  12. Warren October 20, 2014 at 3:51 pm #

    People that act fearful, skitish and paranoid are being followed in stores and malls. By plainclothes cops and security.

  13. M October 20, 2014 at 3:55 pm #

    Let’s just lock up all men. Because, let’s face it, they are all potential dangers. *sigh*

    Once, when both my kids were little, I had a strange man approach me in the parking lot of the grocery store. Turned out to be a bag boy who worked there, offering to help me unload and take my cart after he saw me struggling in the cold with two small children an a cart full of food.

    Boy did I feel stupid, assuming the worst of someone who actually was trying to be helpful.

  14. Jill October 20, 2014 at 4:19 pm #

    Mum #2 reported the men had the affrontry to stare at her daughter, with no focus on her. And she was looking particularly attractive that day, too.

  15. Donna October 20, 2014 at 4:22 pm #

    A few weeks ago at the grocery store I kept running into another attorney I vaguely know. We met up with each other in various aisles 8 or 9 times. I didn’t realize that I was supposed to fear kidnapping. Or maybe it was me who was after his child.

    Folks, if someone is stalking you in a store, it is not to steal your child. Nobody wants him/her except you. It may be to steal your money, but stealing a child from a busy grocery store with the mother right there is not going to happen. It really isn’t going to happen as some organized crime (as opposed to what appeared to be a very spontaneous attempt in Walmart) unless this is the dumbest “gang” ever.

  16. lollipoplover October 20, 2014 at 4:23 pm #

    “They were staring at my daughter with no focus on me. I was 100 per cent convinced they were going to try to take her.”

    I stare at babies all the time in the store with no attention to the parents. Especially well behaved cute ones that wave to me. I am also guilty of making goofy faces and waving back. I am 0 percent likely to steal a child as I already have too many.

    And no focus on you? Sounds like a cry for attention. Or medication.

  17. Claudia October 20, 2014 at 4:33 pm #

    Oh why am I not surprised they were ‘dark middle Eastern looking’ men?! It’s always the way… maybe they ran away when confronted because they were nervous of suddenly being questioned when they were just going around the shops.

    Just today a friend posted on Facebook about a supposed attempted snatch, but from the details it was hard to know if anything had occurred at all. All it says was there was an attempted abduction of two girls, 11 and 16 by a man and woman in their 50s in a van. Not what was said, if anyone was grabbed or if anything was said to try to convince them to get it and what it was.

    So no evidence this was a random snatch (maybe it was some family thing related to these girls, but we don’t even know if they’re sisters or anything). And a 50 something couple trying to abduct *two* girls, one of whom is quite grown up also seems unlikely to me. I’m wondering if it was some kind of cultural misunderstanding, such as the people in the vehicle were from elsewhere and thought it might be reasonable to ask someone to climb in and show them how to get somewhere or something?

  18. Chuck99 October 20, 2014 at 4:42 pm #

    As someone who’s worked in a grocery store, and someone who’s seen how ‘well-behaved’ some children are in the grocery store, maybe they were staring at the child wondering how long the tantrum would last…

    Okay, probably not, but does ‘child snatching’ have to be our first instinct?

  19. Uly October 20, 2014 at 5:02 pm #

    I keep seeing two guys when I do my shopping.

    Possibility 1: We’re buying many of the same items, and are approaching the store in roughly the same fashion (outside first, then inside in number order, then frozen section in my case).

    Possibility 2: They’re the world’s least competent kidnappers.

    Yeah, the second one’s waaaaay more likely than sheer coincidence.

  20. Kimberly Herbert October 20, 2014 at 5:03 pm #

    The summer after I got my DL, we were leaving for vacation. Dad realized we we didn’t have enough milk for his morning coffee and cereal. So he sent me to the store to get a pint of milk. Dad had gone to the bank that morning and got money for the trip. Most of what he had was Canadian bills. He had enough US small bills for tips and drinks on the plane. Then he has 100 dollar bills for the trip back.

    So he sends me to the store at 11 pm with 100 bill to get a pint of milk. There were some sketchy guys from my high school trying to scam the clerk into selling them beer with out id. They were heading out when I checked out and the new scanner system announced very loudly that my change was $98 or something close. The sketchy guys walked out but stood just outside the doors between me and the car.

    I went to the manager and told him he was walking me to my car and why. He did – and told the sketchy guys to leave or he was calling the village cops. When I got home I told Dad off for sending me out with that much money and what happened. We didn’t think about it.

    We left a few hours later for our first flight. True to the “curse of flying with Dad” we got stuck in Boston overnight, and didn’t get to PEI till late the next day. Dad called into the office, the next day.

    His boss got right on the phone and demanded to know if I was OK. Seems the manager recognized me. Dad was a beer distributor, who obviously did large amount of business with the grocery chain.

    Manager called his supervisor and told him what happened – and in a classic case of telephone by the time it got to Dad’s boss the story was I had been beaten up by these thugs. Dad assured him I was fine. When we got home – the voice shouting out the amount of change was turned off.

  21. Uly October 20, 2014 at 5:05 pm #

    stealing a child from a busy grocery store with the mother right there is not going to happen

    I do know of one case where it happened. Well, the kidnapping was in the parking lot. Somebody had really been following the mother, and when she turned to put a bag in the trunk they ran up and snatched the baby.

    Which, as my own mother points out, was in no way this woman’s fault. If somebody is really out to get you, they’re gonna find a way.

    But really, that’s a freak occurrence.

  22. kate October 20, 2014 at 5:25 pm #

    I’ve often run into the same person in aisle after aisle while shopping. If the mother were worried she need not be confrontational, how about “hello, fancy seeing you again.

    I have often seen my husband staring at a cute child and ignoring the parent. Just say hi and stop being paranoid. Most people are being friendly, not planning a kidnapping.

  23. Papilio October 20, 2014 at 5:27 pm #

    Hahaha. Maybe they should stick to small grocery stores to keep the paranoia level down. ‘Supermarkten’ here are so small I always see some people multiple times…

  24. April October 20, 2014 at 5:29 pm #

    So weird u posted this today. I was in Target yesterday (again, I know haha) and there was a pregnant woman in the aisle w me. The woman was on the end of the aisle maybe 3 products down and she had her cart parked w her daughter in it on the end-cap. This crazy lady comes up and tells her ‘is this ur daughter? I’m sure ur a good mother, I can tell bc she looks taken care of and everything, but- u know ppl can come up and just take her there’s been stories..’ The pregnant woman just said ‘ok thank u’ and rolled her cart away. Which just left the crazy lady and me standing across from each other w me looking at her w a ‘what is wrong w u?!’ look on my face LOL

  25. E October 20, 2014 at 5:32 pm #

    Whenever I read these I always think…why is this hitting the news?

    So, sometimes people are creepy. They might be harmless, but sometimes you notice people staring at you. They might be the odd guy that Laura posted about…they might be rude, who knows.

    But it’s not news.

    I had an unknown to me, beat up truck come to my house 3 times last week. Once I didn’t answer my door because I was on a work conference call. The 2nd time I came to the door (with my dog) and he asked me about a dying tree and some debris removal (I declined saying I already had someone who did work like that for me) but I wouldn’t have used him anyway, they didn’t appear to be associated with a company and I’m not going to have someone take down a tree w/o insurance, etc. Anyway – I did get annoyed when they came back 2 days later and rang my bell over and over until I answered and asked the same thing.

    I presume they were just men looking for money/work, but I felt their repeated interruptions annoying and bordering on a little odd. If I chose to, I could have posted on my neighborhood listserv “I didn’t trust them, I think they were casing my house” and gotten the neighbors restless but it’s NOT NEWS.

  26. Emily Morris October 20, 2014 at 5:54 pm #

    I trust my own gut instinct. Mostly because I don’t get the “creepy psycho” vibe very often-I’m startled when I do get the vibe.

    Others are right. Gut instinct is a great thing, but when your mind is polluted with “Everything is gonna get you!” messages, true instinct gets buried.

  27. Ben October 20, 2014 at 6:08 pm #

    To the concerned ladies:
    Could those men perhaps have looked at your child, because they are the sort of cute rays of sunshine that reminds them of their own kids when they were little? Or perhaps the contrary was the case: was your kid causing a scene?

    Not every man is out to get your kid. Especially in a full supermarket full of cameras and security personnel.

  28. Puzzled October 20, 2014 at 6:42 pm #

    >That second report would have been attacked as racist here in >the USA.

    Could that be because it’s racist? Also, this form of racism is exactly why ‘spidy senses’ don’t work as well anymore – because society is rapidly moving towards thinking it’s okay to believe someone is a criminal because some minuscule fraction of their ethnic group committed other crimes.

  29. Becca in Alaska October 20, 2014 at 7:27 pm #

    I have a 6YO, a 4YO, and 2YO twins, I get stared at All.The.Time. Especially when I can’t find a cart with two or more seats and I have the older two each hold a twin hand as we shop. When everyone is behaving it works beautifully. Good heavens if I worried about even a smidgen of the people who stared or talk to the kds or offered help, ect I would have gone insane by now.

  30. Virginia October 20, 2014 at 8:35 pm #

    On the one hand, the headline is pure clickbait and the reporting is pretty poor. There’s no way of knowing what these “middle eastern looking” men intended. On the other hand, if the mothers’ reports are accurate and not the result of racist paranoia, the behavior they experienced was certainly creepy and threatening — especially the part where one man stayed behind her while the other came around from the front. I’d be freaked out too.

    The article’s conclusion — that “children should be reminded not to talk to strangers” — is, of course, laughably irrelevant, whatever was actually going on here.

  31. pentamom October 20, 2014 at 9:08 pm #

    This woman’s child might legitimately have been getting started at by a mentally ill person or a creep. (Or maybe not, but maybe.)

    Okay, so keep her close, and this probably isn’t the day to let her roam into the next aisle by herself.

    And then go home and tell everybody about the weird guy at the store, and forget about it. Chances are, he was being creepy, with no actual intention of acting out on it, or had messed up social perception or was just really weird. One does encounter weird people acting disturbingly weird in public. One never or almost never hears of children being grabbed almost out of their mother’s arms in public places.

  32. Steve October 20, 2014 at 9:25 pm #

    This happened in England, (South Yorkshire) and it would be enough to make everyone suspicious of anyone who fit the profile:


    Quotes from the article:

    “The sexual abuse of about 1,400 children at the hands of Asian men went unreported for 16 years because staff feared they would be seen as racist, a report said today. Children as young as 11 were trafficked, beaten, and raped by large numbers of men between 1997 and 2013 in Rotherham, South Yorkshire, the council commissioned review into child protection revealed.”

    … “Teachers reported seeing children as young as 11, 12 and 13 being picked up outside schools by cars and taxis, given presents and mobile phones and taken to meet large numbers of unknown men in Rotherham or other local towns and cities.”

  33. Maria October 20, 2014 at 9:26 pm #

    Wow…a few weeks ago, something similar happened here in NY where nothing bad ever happens. Thankfully, the mother and the store owner were vigilant and called the police because the two guys who were apprehended in the dairy isle had a camera full of inappropriate images of children and one of them was a registered sex offender. Oh, but wait, Lenore, love sex offenders and so do all you ppl on this site, so that’s okay. Gee, I guess the mom was cray-cray for alerting the police and the manager that someone shady with a camera was following her and her daughter.

  34. Uly October 20, 2014 at 9:43 pm #

    Yawn. Maria, link or it didn’t happen.

  35. BL October 20, 2014 at 10:13 pm #

    “Yawn. Maria, link or it didn’t happen”

    C’mon, Uly, you know her neighbor’s brother’s girlfriend’s sister’s brother’s co-worker’s wife saw it happen!

  36. Emily Morris October 20, 2014 at 10:26 pm #

    Did our nasty photographers do something legitimately creepy?

  37. Gina October 20, 2014 at 11:56 pm #

    MARIA: For somebody who doesn’t agree with this philosophy, you sure spend a lot of time on this site.

  38. Uly October 21, 2014 at 12:13 am #

    Nah, BL, let her reply. I’m sure she has an article from a reputable source about it. I mean, something like this, there has to be an article, right? Unless all the journalists are in the pocket of Big Pedo, that is.

  39. Beth October 21, 2014 at 7:13 am #

    There are thousands of images of children all over the internet, in catalogs, on TV, in yearbooks, and so on. It makes zero sense that anyone would choose to go to the grocery store, of all places, to take “inappropriate” photos of children, much less kidnap them. Let’s see a link.

    Although, I’m not 100% believing that Daily Mail link either. 1400 kids kidnapped over 16 years, and no one said a word?

  40. pentamom October 21, 2014 at 7:54 am #

    Beth, that Rotherham story is actually big news everywhere. It’s a bizarre, incredible scandal, but it’s for real.

    The kids weren’t literally kidnapped as in snatched and not returned — they were lured and abused.

  41. Tim October 21, 2014 at 8:19 am #

    It seems here that child abduction is on the rise in the UK:


  42. Gary October 21, 2014 at 8:29 am #


  43. Dirge October 21, 2014 at 9:17 am #

    How do those men know she wasn’t following them around? Maybe so her kid could pickpocket them?

  44. kate October 21, 2014 at 9:35 am #

    “The two guys separated and as I walked into the tea and coffee aisle, I saw one come from behind me while the other walked towards me.” This could have been creepy behavior I suppose… If the guys were dumb enough to try kidnapping a child away from her mother in the coffee aisle of a busy market. Or as happens to us all the time, we forgot to pick up an item and one goes off and they agree to meet back in that aisle.

  45. sarah October 21, 2014 at 9:51 am #

    Why are you taking time out of your life yo right this if you live in america. Just because the majority of american people are eccentric doesnt mean people in scotland are. I actually live in glasgow where these things are happening and I’ll tell you people are paranoid because there’s a large parts in Glasgow called govanhill “govanhell” and also a few other places where there is violent gangs attacking children selling them etc, there has been umpteen rapes in the past year involving Asian/European men. If the 2 woman had said anything I would have been surprised as the vast majority of immigrants in glasgow cant speak a word of english. You don’t know if you dont stay here thanks for nothing america ✌!!

    1. WWhy where 2 men wandering round a supermarket for a long period of time with no messages,basket, or trolley?

    2. Why did they suddenly split up and corner the woman when no one else as there then suddenly rush off when her husband appeared?

    3. Why did they run off when confronted ?

    4. Why did they have a foreign registration plate if they weren’t upto something ?

  46. K2 October 21, 2014 at 11:07 am #

    The reason we have lost much of our freedom is because bad things do happen in varying degrees all over the world. Part of what we try to teach our kids is how to identify the “creepy” stranger that might wnat to cause harm or might be on drugs or intoxicated and the ones that are safe to talk to. One of the posts says that this type of thing has been happening in that area. It might be unafair to call it hysteria.

  47. pentamom October 21, 2014 at 12:28 pm #

    “4. Why did they have a foreign registration plate if they weren’t upto something ?”

    Huh? How about “because they recently imported their vehicle”?

  48. pentamom October 21, 2014 at 12:30 pm #

    Because they’re visiting and brought their car over via ferry or chunnel?

  49. Papilio October 21, 2014 at 12:38 pm #

    @Sarah: “4. Why did they have a foreign registration plate if they weren’t upto something ?”

    Xenophobia much?

  50. EricS October 21, 2014 at 1:22 pm #

    Wow! Talk about paranoia. lol Now I understand the concerns. But this seems to be a case of over active imagination, and fear blown out of proportion. We all know fear makes people think and do the dumbest things. Makes them irrational and too quick to judge, with lack of thought and reasoning.

    Here’s a bit of a tip, unless the “kidnappers” are completely clueless, which real kidnappers aren’t, they wouldn’t be stalking you inside a public place, with cameras no doubt. They would isolate you, prevent any witnesses. Trust…and apologies if this causes fear in some people…if someone wants to kidnap you or any of your family. You won’t know about it till it’s too late. And they most likely will succeed. Why, because they would have planned it all out already. They would have stalked you, and scoped out your daily routine. It would be days of careful planning. Because that is what kidnappers do. Your regular joe blow who wants to nab their son or daughter from their ex’s wouldn’t be this dedicated. Your ex, or estranged family member would be more likely do the snatch and grab. Not some complete strangers.

    Perhaps they did have malcontent, but more of the mischievous kind. Perhaps they know the paranoia in people in Scotland, and like playing mind games with them. Pretending to “stalk” them, just to get a rise, and make them freak out. Without ever intending any actual crime. Yes, the possibility of jerks/douche bags/a-holes being around every corner (there are a lot of them out there) is far, far, far greater than “predators” looking to kidnap or harm your child. But douchery isn’t a crime, although sometimes I wish it were. lol

    I’ll also add, that I go grocery shopping too. And I bump into mothers and/or fathers with their children several times while I’m shopping. It’s a grocery store after all. I don’t think your the only one that eats cereal, or chips. I could say they are “stalking” me as well. But because I use common sense and reason, I don’t get all bent out of shape. In fact, most often when this happens, as it does happen often (because I shop often), I play faces with the kids. I also acknowledge the parent(s) as well. I’m just glad that people are a little less fearful in my community.

    The most frustrating part about this, is that this story is know going viral online. It will be just a matter of time, before it becomes a Snopes article. lol

    And really, “middle eastern appearance”? Sounds to me like that woman has the case of Terroristitis. The mind is very powerful thing. Given the right kind of conditioning, people can be made to believe there is a large pink elephant staring at them, and ONLY THEM, in the room. And it will be VERY REAL to them.

  51. EricS October 21, 2014 at 1:36 pm #

    @Maria you are one perverted person. Only perverted thoughts come from perverted minds. Your also paranoid. And unreasonable. Hmmm.. perverted, paranoid, unreasonable. You sound like a pedophile. See how easily one can misconstrued situations and facts.

    Just because it happened once, or a few times in 20 years, doesn’t mean it’s happening all the time, everywhere. You are one of those people that spreads this insanity and paranoia. You are perpetuator of perversions. Why is that. Do you get off on thinking about bad things happening to children? Hmmmm.

    And just because your friend’s friend’s brother’s sister-in-law’s friend’s barber’s cousin’s brother-in-law’s mailman says it happened to a friend’s friend’s mother-in-law’s niece, doesn’t make it actual accurate or true. Do you have the police report of this? Is there one? If that story actually went down, and the police were involved, there should be public record of the incident. Can you produce that? A newspaper article? A link to the story? Or are we just suppose to take your paranoid and perverted word for it? So you feel good about yourself spreading such inane thoughts. The “if i’m paranoid, everyone else should be too” attitude.

  52. Mrs. H. October 21, 2014 at 1:47 pm #

    @Laura The man following you probably had a pregnancy fetish, which is WAY more common than pedophilia. Not sure if that’s reassuring or the opposite, but anyone who’s ever been hugely pregnant has, no doubt, noticed it. At least he wasn’t ogling the kids!

  53. Reziac October 21, 2014 at 1:48 pm #

    Pentamom protests, “Beth, that Rotherham story is actually big news everywhere. It’s a bizarre, incredible scandal, but it’s for real.

    The kids weren’t literally kidnapped as in snatched and not returned — they were lured and abused.”

    And no one noticed? and 1600 kids magically kept their collective mouths shut about it for years on end?? there weren’t any mysterious pregnancies, no unexplained bruises that parents were sure to notice?

    That’s why I don’t buy it. And I remember the McMartin Preschool case too vividly to take any such report at face value.

    (All this aside from the Daily Mail’s reputation…)

  54. Philip Horner October 21, 2014 at 1:49 pm #

    What are we thinking, letting men shop alongside children? I suggest setting aside one day of the week when men can shop. Otherwise keep these bad guys out of the supermarket.

  55. EricS October 21, 2014 at 2:02 pm #

    @ Sarah: to answer your questions with logic, common sense, and reasoning.

    1. WWhy where 2 men wandering round a supermarket for a long period of time with no messages,basket, or trolley?

    A: Some people don’t like asking for assistance, and insist on finding items themselves. Perhaps, they were only looking for a few items that didn’t need them to lug around a bag or cart. Or perhaps, they were undercover security keeping an eye out for shoplifters. Yes, mothers have been known to shoplift, using their kids as decoy.

    2. Why did they suddenly split up and corner the woman when no one else as there then suddenly rush off when her husband appeared?

    A: Umm…don’t make up words the article doesn’t say. They didn’t “rush” off, they “walked away”, to very distinct things. Again this is how misinformation and paranoia are spread. Perhaps it was just a coincidence. Much like when someone turns away, as you look to face them. Where they staring at YOU, or at something else in your direction, and coincidently turns away just at that moment you turned to look at them. It happens more often than you realize.

    But let’s say they were up to no good. I’m more inclined to believe that they were targeting the mother and not the child. More specifically, the mother’s purse. One guy distracts the mother by paying attention to the child, because paranoid mother’s are easily distracted. While the other man snatches the purse. Much, much easier than snatching a kid.

    3. Why did they run off when confronted ?

    A: Well, let’s get this straight, you are not talking about ONE incident, you are referring to the 2 that were mentioned. And in regards to the second one, according to the police, there was no evidence of that happening. So far. But you’d think something like that would’ve been caught on CCTV, which no evidence shows that to be true. Just the word of a paranoid mom. As for the first incident, “on-going” investigations have not confirmed any malicious intent. The Phoenix Retail Centre received “A complaint”. Meaning ONE. A very real possibility that the woman just had a whole paranoid elaborate story concocted in her head. THAT is very real for many people. Research “eye witness testimonies”. There is irrefutable proof that one’s memories can deceive them. Especially in situations of stress, as well as how much time has passed since their incident. People who swear they saw a man with a blue jacket and umbrella fighting with a blonde woman. When in reality, it was a man in a brown jacket (and another man in a blue jacket walked by accidentally bumping into him, and there was an umbrella in the background), having a discussion with a two women (a blonde and a brunette), and the brunette was the one doing the talking, because she was upset about something her boyfriend did (not the guy in the brown jacket). So her mannerisms seemed erratic.

    4. Why did they have a foreign registration plate if they weren’t upto something ?

    A: Because they travelled from a different country, and ferried their car over? I’m sure there are more than one car in Glasgow that have foreign plates. Visiting family, planning on moving to Scotland, selling their car to someone in Glasgow, there are many reasons. lol

  56. Amy October 21, 2014 at 3:42 pm #

    That same thing happened to me, and I told myself I was being paranoid. Until we left the store and the same guy I kept seeing in the store, actually did grab my 3yo son’s arm and pull him partway through the outer door. We were in an airlock packed with people and he kept reaching for my son, who kept backing away until he was essentially herded toward the outer door. I had a baby with me and had to push my way through carts and people, and for some reason couldn’t yell, but my son twisted free and ran back inside. It never made sense to me, happened to fast, and I still wonder what was going on. Surely the guy was stronger than a little boy and if he had truly intended to grab him, he could’ve. But that feeling in my gut comes back every time I think of what happened (10 years ago) and I’m so thankful it ended like it did.

  57. bmj2k October 21, 2014 at 4:14 pm #

    “I kept seeing them round the store. I couldn’t get away from them.”

    What are the odds of, while shopping, repeatedly crossing the paths of others who are also shopping? Pretty good, I guess.

  58. Flurry October 21, 2014 at 8:24 pm #

    A little off topic but regarding the question “Why where 2 men wandering round a supermarket for a long period of time with no messages,basket, or trolley?” I understand the vernacular of basket and trolley, but what is a ‘message’ as it relates to the grocery store?

  59. Steve October 21, 2014 at 8:29 pm #

    Reziac said:

    “(All this aside from the Daily Mail’s reputation…)”

    Responding to that I would suggest you do your own investigation.

    There’s a tendency for people to disbelieve things they don’t want to believe. Yet, with the internet you can do a search and read many different sources.

    How about the BBC ?


    How about this document from the House of Commons / Parliament


    You do have to scroll down on that House of Commons report to read the Rotherem discussion.

  60. hineata October 21, 2014 at 9:49 pm #

    The Rotheram thing looks terrible! However, it still doesn’t mean every ‘Asian’ (which I think means Indian/Pakistani in the UK, rather than Chinese as it does here) is out to steal your kids.

    And because the men were ‘Middle-Eastern’ in appearance, imagine the furor if they’d just snuck around the supermarket with their eyes down looking at no-one? Then we’d have crazies reporting them for ‘furtive’ behaviour….

  61. pentamom October 21, 2014 at 10:33 pm #

    Yes, the Rotherham thing is unbelievable — and it’s true. As Steve points out, it’s not just a Daily Mail thing. It’s been all over reputable international news sources, and the Home Office admits it happened.

    I don’t blame people for being skeptical if they hadn’t heard about it before, because it’s so incredibly bizarre, but I am a tad surprised people hadn’t heard before. This really should be a mainstream story.

  62. pentamom October 21, 2014 at 10:36 pm #

    hineata, I agree it certainly DOESN’T mean every Asian is out to steal your kids. I think Steve just meant that it’s maybe a little more understandable if people in that part of the world are a little more paranoid about such things. It’s still not rational, especially given that the profile of the Rotherham situation doesn’t fit people walking around in grocery stores, but understandable given human nature.

  63. pentamom October 21, 2014 at 10:37 pm #

    Flurry, I’m going to guess, “shopping list.”

  64. Donna October 22, 2014 at 8:38 am #

    pentamom and Steve – I believe that if you were to look back the McMartin preschool mess, you will find that it was reported by many completely reputable news sources. I remember seeing it on national news programs and 20/20 myself at the time. There were maybe even congressional hearings about it too. Everyone around the US believed that it was the god-given truth that the McMartin’s abused their students. None of that made it remotely true.

    I think that is what Reziac is saying. Not that the Rotherham thing isn’t currently believed to be true, but whether it is in fact true or is some McMartin preschool-esque, everyone jump on the bandwagon because it is the cool thing to do, witch hunt. I tend to agree with him. I don’t doubt that there were some children exploited exactly as described, but I have a hard time believing the full story.

  65. Suzanne October 22, 2014 at 8:49 am #

    First shame on the reporter for using the word “gang” here. Two people are a pair, you need 4 to be a gang. At least that’s what I’ve always understood but feel free to correct me if I’m wrong. My guess is these kids were being brats and that’s why they were getting stared at. Lastly, it is not unusual to see the same people throughout a trip to the store – there are only so many paths to take. Arrgggh!

    Also, I do not think the second report would be attacked as racist here in the US, popular media is sure to point out when there are “middle eastern appearance” people involved in alleged nefarious acts – it makes the act seem that much more nefarious.

  66. Alexander October 22, 2014 at 1:47 pm #

    @EricS “Here’s a bit of a tip, unless the “kidnappers” are completely clueless, which real kidnappers aren’t, they wouldn’t be stalking you inside a public place, with cameras no doubt. They would isolate you, prevent any witnesses. ”

    I am a bit curious to know what makes you such an expert on kidnappers. In my experience, the people making all the profits and are skilled, are not the ones taking the risks. The actual kidnappers are very low level thugs, with very low skill level and nothing to lose. I am not a kidnapper by the way, I just grew up around some very rough people. Also kidnapping someone in a public place is surprisingly easy, provided the child is young enough.
    Here is an example for you: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2SALrm2KHzg
    and another: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wr7gazG1kuk

    Plenty of people and cameras in both instances.

    Personally I find it odd that the men ran while confronted by security. They could have done that for a number of reasons of course, but it’s not normal behavior.

    I think that most extremes are bad in general. The one extreme of watching your kids 24/7 like a hawk is clearly unhealthy but the other extreme of assuming everyone is friendly and nothing terrible can possibly happen is equally unhealthy. In martial arts and security training you learn something called the awareness pyramid.

    That is to say you can’t always walk around in a hyper vigilant state (not without going insane anyway) but your level of vigilance must increase due to surrounding circumstances.

    For example.
    1) You are walking out of work at 5 p.m. and there is plenty of people around. Your vigilance is relaxed.
    2)You are walking out of work at 10 p.m. but it’s well lit and there is still some people around. Your vigilance is still relaxed but you pay attention a bit more.
    3)You are walking out of work at 12 a.m. The street lights are out and there is no one around that you can see but you think you saw movement in the bushes. You should be alert as you go to your car. Identify escape routes as needed and have ready access to whatever self defense device you chose to employ.
    4)You are walking out of work at 12 a.m. The street lights are out and there are several people dressed in face concealing outfits milling about your car with one of them fiddling with the door handle. You should turn around go back inside and call the police.

    These women obviously weren’t trained security pros or anything like that. But their level of awareness was amped up by seeing people following them around. Putting aside all the irrelevant fluff such as them being men, or being foreign which should in no way cause suspicion I still can’t fully commit to judging them harshly.

    There was a number of actions they could have taken, such as simply keeping an eye on the persons they found suspicious and checking out. I am going to give them the benefit of the doubt here, because it’s so easy to be Monday night quarterbacking and saying stuff like “The men were just there to buy cheese.” But none of us were there and something about the mens’ behavior made these women suspicious. Possibly rightly so, since the men ran away when confronted by security.

    I don’t think they should have gone all the way to the top end of the pyramid and called the police, but being somewhere in the middle is understandable.

    What I do have a problem with is the Sunday mail leaping on the story as though a kidnapping was narrowly averted without a single shred of evidence to that effect. That is completely unacceptable and only serves to promote panic where none is needed. But I won’t judge anyone too harshly for trying to get away from another person that frightens them or makes them uncomfortable, so long as the media and the police are kept out of it.

  67. Donna October 22, 2014 at 2:17 pm #

    “In my experience, the people making all the profits and are skilled, are not the ones taking the risks. The actual kidnappers are very low level thugs, with very low skill level and nothing to lose.”

    First off, what experience do you have with kidnapping and kidnappers that leads you to be such an expert? You are the one who said “in my experience,” so I am just wondering what that experience is.

    Second, where are all these cases of people kidnapping kids from public places for profit occurring such that you have any basis to make this assertion? It certainly isn’t occurring in the US. I highly doubt that it is happening in the UK or most other developed nations. In fact, the vast majority of kids involved in slavery or sex rings are actually sold/given by their guardians or are street kids; they are not kidnap victims at all.

  68. Alexander October 22, 2014 at 2:33 pm #

    @Donna I already answered where my experience comes from in my original post. Also, I agree that most children involved in the sex trade are not kidnapped. Neither are they sold by their parents. Most of them are actually runaways or abandoned or homeless kids. Even in the U.S.

    All I am saying is that there is a middle ground between hyper vigilance and completely burying your head in the sand. Kidnapping IS rare. Crime rates are relatively low. But that doesn’t mean that if you actually see someone trying to kidnap your kid you should assume they are just asking for directions.

    But I don’t want to make an argument based on my expertise. It’s actually irrelevant and you are free to do your own research. I came from a place where the police are completely ineffective, so yes, the U.S. is rather different in that sense. But that is not to say it’s is without it’s share of very serious problems.

  69. Donna October 22, 2014 at 8:08 pm #

    So, your sole experience for which you base your assertions is that you grew up around “rough people?” Were these “rough people” kidnappers? If not, I’m not sure that says about anything.

    “But that doesn’t mean that if you actually see someone trying to kidnap your kid you should assume they are just asking for directions.”

    Neither of these women saw anyone try to kidnap their kid. Based on what they describe, I don’t see why kidnapping even jumped into their heads except the warped world view that everyone wants our children and they are in danger 24/7. If I saw this and got a creep vibe, I would grab onto my purse and my guess, from many years experience dealing with criminals, is that THAT is what they were looking to do – jack her purse, not her kid.

  70. pentamom October 23, 2014 at 11:17 am #

    Donna, fair points. There seems to be more to this Rotherham thing than there was to the McMartin case, in that there appear to be records showing that there was some stuff reported that the authorities turned a blind eye to, but that may turn out to be overblown as well. Time will tell. At any rate, it seems more than likely to me that whatever was going on there, the numbers are exaggerated.

  71. n s October 25, 2014 at 4:12 pm #

    I’m sorry but after reading many comments I’m shocked at how a lot of you are making it out to be untrue. 2 days ago a friend of mine was at a cashpoint – had her baby in the buggy and had 1 hand on it – next thing this lady grabbed hold of the buggy and went to run off. Thankfully, my friend smacked her in the face, while having to leave her toddler standing there for a few seconds on his own. She’s really shook up now and so am I for that matter that someone could so blatantly try and take your baby. Not only that but there’s this link: http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/parents-warned-watch-out-child-4467423
    Surely it’s better to be safe than sorry????