New Bedford Police: No Complaints About RV Posted on Social Media
NEW BEDFORD (WBSM) — A social media post went viral this morning warning New Bedford parents of a woman in an RV acting strangely around children, but police say they’ve received no complaints about it.
Earlier this morning, Jamie Stykowski shared a photo to Facebook that was a screenshot from Snapchat showing an RV parked along West Beach near Hazelwood Park in New Bedford’s South End.
The RV has open doors, and what appears to be an out-of-state license plate, although it’s hard to make out exactly which state.
The snap also contained the following text:
“Somebody just came up to me at the beach telling me to watch the lady in this camper because she’s been trying to get little kids in there.”
“There’s a man with her as well.”
“So just be careful y’all and tell and (sic) friend to tell a friend.”
“She made it a point to go right beside my kids to play with sand as if she ain’t grown Smh!!!”
“Repost we don’t play that!!!”
As of this writing, Stykowski’s post had over 1,000 shares.
We reached out to the New Bedford Police Department to find out if it was a hoax, or if residents should be concerned.
“We have received no calls on this,” New Bedford Police spokesperson Lt. Scott Carola told WBSM this afternoon. “We have also confirmed no camper at the beach right now.”
Police departments often have to deal with viral social media rumors like this, such as last year when there was Facebook buzz about potential kidnappers at the Wareham Target and police said it "happens all the time," but Wareham Police debunked it as a hoax.
The photo of the RV certainly appears to be from New Bedford. You can make out in the photo the sidewalk area and the strip of grass that separates it from the road. On the other side of the photo is the rock wall of Hazelwood Park and the entrance way to the park. In the background, you can see the mill buildings.
Stykowski told us that she received the screenshot from a friend, and that friend later provided her a link to the original snap; however, since she was not friends with the person on Snapchat, she could not view it for herself.
“I really hope it’s not a hoax,” she said. “But then again, I honestly hope that nobody is out there preying upon the kids either.”