SOUTH PORTLAND – Police and school administrators are calling for vigilance in response to two reports of a man making inappropriate comments, and in one case offering a ride in his car, to female middle school students near the Wainwright Recreational complex.

Police Lt. Frank Clark said the incidents happened in the past two weeks and involved a man driving an older model blue sedan.

In the first incident, the man approached two girls who were walking together after a sports activity and made suggestive comments to them. In the second incident, the man drove up beside a girl who was walking alone and offered her a ride home.

The girls have described the man as being in his 20s, with dark, curly hair and a mustache. A South Portland detective was to interview the girls Thursday.

Clark said police have increased their patrol presence in the Highland Avenue area since receiving information from school officials earlier this week.

“Two incidents within a two-week period, that rises to the level of being suspicious,” Clark said. “There is nothing to suggest that any crimes have been committed, but we want to make sure the community is in tune with what happened.”

Superintendent Suzanne Godin said school officials learned about the incidents from a parent.

On Tuesday, informational letters were sent home with students who play on teams that practice and play at the Wainwright fields. On Wednesday, letters went home with elementary students. Godin decided also to notify the entire district through the AlertNow message system, which sends alerts via email and telephone.

It’s the first time the three-year-old alert system, generally used for school closure notifications, has been used for a warning about safety.

“We felt, because so many students walk to school, it was something that needed to be shared with the broader community,” Godin said. “The issue for us was the number of students that are in that area, particularly at this time of year, and also the report that someone was offered a ride.”

Anyone who has information for police should call 799-5511, extension 7448.

Staff Writer Trevor Maxwell can be contacted at 791-6451 or at:

[email protected]