The suspect tried twice to entice the girl into his van. She refused both times and she reported the incidents when she got to school

WINTER HAVEN — A Polk middle school student was approached by a man who tried to get her into his van Thursday, according to authorities.

The 12-year-old girl was walking south on 5th Street NE in Winter Haven toward Denison Middle School about 7:45 a.m. when a man police described as a black male, 30 to 40 years old, with a medium complexion and a thin build drove up in a dark-colored minivan asking if she needed a ride, Winter Haven police said.

The girl declined the offered ride, and the man approached her again at 4th Street and Avenue A SE, offering to pay her $20 if she would get into the van, the WHPD said.

The girl refused again, and she reported the incidents when she arrived at school, according to the WHPD.

Police are asking anyone who was in the area of 5th Street NE or 4th Street and Avenue A SE between 7:30 and 8 a.m. Thursday to call Winter Haven detectives at 863-291-5620.

Kathy Leigh Berkowitz can be reached at kberkowitz@theledger.com or at 863-802-7558. Follow her on Twitter @kberkowitzthel1.