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Child self-defense in light of luring incidents in Lexington

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Families in Lexington are on alert because police say a man has been trying to lure children into his truck. It has happened three times in the last month, and police think the same person could be behind all of them.

Two of the incidents happened in the Boston Road area and the other on Henry Clay Boulevard. But now some children are learning how to protect themselves in case this happens to them.

You do just about anything as a parent to protect your kids from stuff that could harm them. But how far will you go in today's society to ensure their safety? We asked that question, and it led us to Brian Chewning's Taekwondo Academy in Lexington.

"I mean bad things happen, and we have to be ready for it," said Carrie Trapp, a parent with a five-year-old son, Barron, in the class.

The instructor, Brian Chewning, teaches kids how to not get roped into a bad situation. And he even brought up the recent luring incidents as an example in class of why these kids have to be observant and aware of their surroundings.

"This guy has not been caught. Understand?" said Brian Chewning.
"Yes sir!" the kids screamed in reply.

More than karate goes on at Brian Chewning's Taekwondo Academy. Life skills are taught to prepare these kids for anything that comes their way.

"Even before these recent incidents, it was subtly in the back of our mind because of the way society is today," said Chip Ecton, parent of five-year-old Nathan in the class. "You just never can be prepared enough."

It's something that parents say is now a necessity when it used to be a luxury and just something extra for kids to be involved in.

"You think sometimes that you're being overprotective as a parent," said Trapp. "But there's just a reassurance that you know that you're doing the right thing because society is changing."

They are taught things like stranger danger, self-defense, and even when and how to dial 9-1-1 before something bad happens.

"Having someone else teach it and watching other kids learn about it, I think he's picked up on it much better," said Ecton.

"We're trying to teach parents and children to be proactive and not be reactive," said Chewning.

And the little ninjas can take it all home with them and use it if ever danger comes their way.

"This is a priority because this is my child I'm talking about," said Chewning.

As for the recent luring incidents, the man has not been found. But Lexington police say unless he actually grabs a child, he cannot be arrested. That's because police say at this point, he has not actually committed a crime.


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