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Strangers asking Flathead Valley women to get into their cars

Posted at 8:05 AM, Aug 06, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-06 16:29:34-04

KALISPELL — Several posts on social media by women in the Flathead Valley is raising red flags for law enforcement with women saying they've been approached by strangers trying to get them into their car.

Imagine you’re outside enjoying your break, when a stranger approaches you and tries to get you into their car -- that’s exactly what happened to one Kalispell woman.

“When he came up to me I just got a really bad feeling, and the fact that he asked me for a ride and the way it was asked, just the whole presentation," Tiffany Stumpf recalled,

She had her headphones in, listening to music sitting outside her office when a stranger approached and aggressively asked her several times if she wanted a ride in his car.

"The first time -- actually when he asked me for a ride -- when he first approached me, and I said 'no that's okay, thank you'," Stumpf told MTN News.

"And then right before he left he asked me again, he cut off the music conversation we were having and said 'do you need a ride'?" she added.

A white car was a few hundred feet from Stumpf and she says the man kept the driver's side of the door open the entire time he spoke with her.

MTN News talked with Kalispell Police Department Captain Jim Wardenski about Stumpf's encounter.

"More recently, within the last week or so, our social media expert has brought information to my attention," he said. "She's forwarded me a couple of posts that were out there."

Wardenski says these situations raise red flags they should always be reported to authorities as it helps police identify potential trends like abductions and human trafficking.

"Any information that we have, we try and give it its due diligence and investigate those leads," Wardenski said.

He added that while human trafficking and abduction cases aren't on the rise in the Flathead Valley, people should be aware of their surroundings, trust their instincts and report any suspicious activity.