An attempted kidnapping of a child outside Yosemite Villa Estate last Saturday has some in Shunyi worried. There's a vague report that a middle-aged (30-40) Chinese man came up toward an international student and tried to drag her into his car. A nearby guard and a taxi driver came to the rescue and the incident reported to the police.
No word on motive, although the article speculates that it may have been for ransom. There's no need for panic at this point, as it may just be an isolated incident. Certainly, the headline of China Briefing is a bit too sensationalistic for our taste (only one reported case, with one reported kidnapper, so what's with the plurals?), but it's always a good idea to teach children to be aware of their surroundings. Local schools are reportedly responding by instructing students on personal safety and self-defense.
Local Expats Speak Out
"Yes, it is true and this is not the first time this has happened. Young woman I know was attacked by a man in the city. She is rather tall and could get away but I can tell you that she still "carries" it with her. And another kidnap attempt happened near Yashow. Her friend helped her and also there was a little van approaching them with an open door.
It made me more alert and even [though my child] is a boy, my 14-year-old boy is (was) not allowed to go to town in the evening or during the day by himself or by taxi. But now not even by himself in the neighborhood. I know it must be possible to do so but I am very glad he understands my concerns and he deals with this without any comment. Only the idea that they take your child ... We all have to be alert. Why should this not happen in Beijing while it happens everywhere else in the world? It does not mean we must be scared to go out of the house but just be alert" --Desiree
"It's not just children. There have been reported cases of kidnappers targeting women driving expensive cars. BJ is no different than any major city. Where I come from, carjackings aren't unusual. You should always be on alert and pay attention to your surroundings." --Shunyi2005
"Yes, it's true. Some of the details differ from your scenario and the notices sent out by schools, however the message is clear. Use the same common sense and caution regarding your children's safety that you would in your home countries. You can never take anything for granted especially the presumed safety of our loved ones." --Ausstina L