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Maryland jogger uses TikTok to warn of ‘nefarious’ white van: ‘You’re not safe’

A Maryland woman took to TikTok last month to warn others about her frightening encounter with a van while she was jogging.

Jenn, who requested to be identified by her first name only, told Fox News Digital that on Oct. 24, around 2 p.m., she was running on a somewhat rural road with her dog in her neighborhood near Prescott, when a “nefarious” white van slowly pulled up beside her on the wrong side of the road and then proceeded to travel off. 

“I always run on the side of the road where vehicles are coming toward me. So, I get off the side of the road, and this is a very remote stretch. In hindsight, I realize it was not safe, and I don’t run any more outside,” she said. “So, I get off the side of the road, the van slows down, and … they’re driving slowly past me.”

Jenn ran to the other side of a drainage ditch that runs parallel to the road when the van, which had Florida tags, pulled up behind her and stayed there for a few seconds until it left.

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“I got this bad feeling,” she said.

Jenn started running home after the strange encounter, but as she made her way back, she saw the van again heading toward her at a high speed with its rear sliding door open. 

“This time it’s driving fast. And that’s the first thing I registered was, ‘Oh, s—, that’s the van. Oh, s—. They’re going fast.’ As they turn the corner, the back door is open. I can see into the rear of the van. I can see the interior from the sliding door that’s open,” she recalled. 

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Jenn, a mother, again jumped over the drainage ditch near the side of the road, and the van driver slammed the rear door shut, making her think there was another person besides the driver in the back of the van. That’s when she began recording so that she would have the van’s license plate number. 

The white van with its break lights off

In the video Jenn posted on TikTok to warn others this kind of incident could happen to anyone, the van’s brake lights turn on and then off as it pulls beside Jenn and then takes off a second time.

Jenn said she called 911 “immediately,” and a neighbor who witnessed the incident came out to check on her.

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Every week I’ve called [police],” she said. “The farthest that we’ve gotten is they ran the tags, which initially came back to a leasing company out of Florida, which had leased the van to another leasing company, which had leased the van to a company in Delaware. 

“Some guys run the business, and they have been subpoenaed to find out who was actually driving the van and why. That was 2½ weeks ago. But that was the last update I’ve gotten.”

A Maryland State Police vehicle

The Maryland State Police Easton barracks told Fox News Digital investigators “were contacted about this inquiry … but uncovered no evidence of a crime at this time.”

Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact Maryland State Police at Easton at 410-822-3101. 

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Even if the encounter with the van wasn’t an attempt to abduct Jenn or her dog, Jenn still wants to know who was driving why the driver pulled up beside her and drove away twice.

At 7.5 million views on Jenn’s TikTok video, it’s clear other social media users are curious to know what happened. 

The white van driving away from Jenn

Jenn said the situation has made her feel a kind of “radical acceptance” that she is not always safe, even in the places that feel harmless and familiar. As a mother, she says she is more worried about her child’s safety after the incident with the van than she is about her own safety.

“Let’s not let our kids walk around these neighborhoods alone. Let’s not let our kids walk themselves home from the bus stop unattended, even with a couple of kids,” she said. 

“As far as women are concerned, a message for women and the public is: Be prepared. Don’t keep your head down. Don’t be oblivious. Don’t tell yourself that you’re safe, because you’re not. … And that’s great if you’re lucky, but you’re not safe in the world. And that’s OK. It just is what it is.”

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