Police investigate playground incident

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RANTOUL, Ill. (WCIA) — Police responded to a battery report at a playground off Frost Avenue Sunday afternoon.

A group of children were playing outside when an adult relative of one of the children, who police say was likely drunk, grabbed another child by the arm, swept her feet out from under her, causing her to fall to the ground.

“He also made some inappropriate comments that you wouldn’t make to a child,” Sgt. Rodney Sullivan said.

The victim’s mother, Jennifa Dix, said she is still shaken up by what happened. She said she let her daughter go play with the other child on the playground after the man said he would be with the kids. She was shocked when she decided to go outside to check on her daughter and saw her running toward her with grass stains on her pants, bruises and scratches.

“As soon as I get to the edge of the park over there, my daughter came running at me and she’s like, ‘that man hurt me, that man hurt me,'” Dix said. “She told me that he said he’d duct-tape their mouths, kill them, told them that he kills police for fun.”

Sullivan said police took pictures of Dix’s daughter’s bruised arm and have sent a report to the state’s attorney’s office.

“We are still trying to make contact with the suspect,” he said. “He was not cooperative that night. His family was less than cooperative that night and continued to be that way.”

Sullivan said he wanted to reassure the community that this was an isolated incident.

“This is not some random person trying to snatch up kids,” Sullivan said. “This is an isolated incident with a known offender at this point. It’s definitely disturbing the way he talked to these children, but like I said, it’s an isolated incident.”

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