PADEN CITY - Wetzel County sheriff's deputies and Paden City police are investigating reports of a man chasing a young girl as she walked home from school Wednesday.
According to Wetzel County Sheriff James Hoskins, the incident happened Wednesday afternoon when a white male - described as about 6 feet tall with a thin build, shaved head and no visible scars or tattoos - chased the child. The man reportedly was wearing jeans and a gray shirt.
Hoskins said the child was walking home from the school when she passed the man, who appeared to be hitchhiking. After walking 20 yards past him, she said she noticed the man had started to follow her. Once she began to run, the man also began to run after her, Hoskins said.
The child crossed the roadway, at which point the man turned and went the other direction.
The man is not a suspect in any crime, Hoskins said, noting authorities want to speak with him to get to the bottom of the incident. Authorities spent Thursday canvassing the area and speaking with residents, some of whom saw the man but did not witness the incident.
"We think this is an isolated incident, but we want to make sure the kids are safe," Hoskins said.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the Wetzel County Sheriff's Department at 304-455-2430 or the Paden City Police Department at 304-337-2281.