A man attempted to kidnap two children in separate incidents Wednesday near an Orange County elementary school where a similar abduction attempt occurred late last month, authorities said.
Officers were searching around the campus of Lee Elementary School in Rossmoor (map) after a 7-year-old girl said a man in a van offered her candy.
Just 10 minutes later, a man also in a van told an 8-year-old boy that he would return to kidnap the student after school.
Both incidents happened near the playground, where authorities said students had been safe because they had responded properly.
"The description closely matches the description on the incident of March 24," said Orange County Sheriff's Department spokesman Jim Amormino. "In all the cases, the children did exactly the right thing by running away in the opposite direction and running to an adult to get help."
The principal at the school sent a letter to parents Wednesday, saying the attempted kidnapper was a white man in his 50s with short hair, as was the case in the March 24 incident. In that case, two girls said a man in a van pulled up next to two girls as they walked home from the school playground.
The man got out of the van and told them to "come here," but they ran and hid. The van drove by slowly, apparently looking for them, then eventually drove away.
The vehicle was described as a gray or silver minivan with a missing rear window,.
It's not clear if the attempted kidnapper had an accomplice. In the case 2 1/2 weeks ago, a teenage boy with blond hair was spotted in the van by the girls.