It happened again this week. A child abduction of a little girl from Wolf Point. The 4-year-old was playing on a playground in Poplar when she was taken shortly after 9 p.m. last Friday.

She was found alive later and her abductor was caught shortly there after.

John William Lieba II of Wolf Point is basically a kid himself. At 20 years old he has been charged with felony kidnapping, aggravated sexual assault of a child and attempted murder by the Fort Peck Tribal Court.

It's a sad story all the way around.

So how can we prevent these things from happening? Or, can we?

I am a very protective papa. Sometimes my kids think that I am there too much, but my wife and I have vowed that we would do anything to protect them. They are always in our sight and they get a good talkin' to if they leave that sight.

It's so important especially in the age that we live in. Anyone could be a predator.

As parents in Billings, what can we do to prevent this from happening to our families?

Start by knowing these facts courtesy of Kids Health.

  • Most kids who are reported missing have run away or there has been a misunderstanding with their parents about where they were supposed to be.
  • Of the kids and teens who are truly abducted, most are taken by a family member or an acquaintance; 25 percent of kids are taken by strangers.
  • Almost all kids kidnapped by strangers are taken by men, and about two-thirds of stranger abductions involve female children.
  • Most abducted kids are in their teens.
  • Kids are rarely abducted from school grounds.

They go on to write some helpful tips that you and I might use.

  • Set boundaries about the places your kids go. Supervise them in places like malls, movie theaters, parks, public bathrooms, or while fundraising door to door.
  • Never leave kids alone in a car or stroller, even for a minute.
  • Choose caregivers — babysitters, childcare providers, and nannies — carefully and check their references. If you've arranged for someone to pick up your kids from school or day care, discuss the arrangements beforehand with your kids and with the school or childcare center.
  • Avoid dressing your kids in clothing with their names on it — children tend to trust adults who know their names.

Thank you to Kids Health for that information.

As parents it our responsibility. Let's take care of our children and grow them in fine adults.

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