'Stranger Danger' warning: Kids offered candy while walking home from school in Ahwatukee

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Tomasi and Koa told police a strange woman in an SUV offered them candy canes in Ahwatukee. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Tomasi and Koa told police a strange woman in an SUV offered them candy canes in Ahwatukee. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Koa ran over to get some candy, but Tomasi knew better. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Koa ran over to get some candy, but Tomasi knew better. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Another parent in the area claims her two daughters were also offered candy canes by a woman in an SUV. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Another parent in the area claims her two daughters were also offered candy canes by a woman in an SUV. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Their mom  is hoping what happened to her children will be a reminder to other parents, about the importance of talking to children about "Stranger Danger." (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Their mom is hoping what happened to her children will be a reminder to other parents, about the importance of talking to children about "Stranger Danger." (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
AHWATUKEE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

Carolee Mafi is happy to have all her kids home for the holidays, especially 9-year-old Tomasi Mafi and 6-year-old Koa Mafi.

A few days ago, the boys were approached by a strange woman around the corner from their house in Ahwatukee.

 "We always talk about this at home, a stranger in a car tries to get you to come to them, offering puppies or candy or anything like that," said Mafi. "I was just shocked it actually happened to my children."

The kids told Phoenix police they had just gotten off the bus last Thursday in front of the Portofino apartments at Chandler Boulevard and 40th Street when they noticed an SUV driving slowly right next to them.

"She rolled down the window and she reached back and grabbed two candy canes and asked us if we can eat candy," said Tomasi.

Koa ran over to get some candy, but Tomasi knew better.

He yelled out to his younger brother to come back, shouting, "We don't talk to strangers."

The boys then ran home.

Another parent in the area claims her two daughters were also offered candy canes by a woman in an SUV.

"Maybe if someone was at the grocery store, or church passing it out but pulling up in her car as they were walking home from school, that seems odd to me," said Mafi.

The boys described the woman as being middle-aged, fairly heavy set, with blond hair driving a dark colored SUV.

Mafi is hoping what happened to her children will be a reminder to other parents about the importance of talking to children about "Stranger Danger."

Police told Mafi that the woman in the vehicle may have thought she was doing something nice and had no intention of hurting the kids, but the boys did the right thing by running off.

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Jason Barry
Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

Click to learn more about Jason.

Jason Barry

Jason Barry has been reporting in the Valley since 1997.

He is a nine-time Rocky Mountain Emmy Award winner who is best known for his weekly Dirty Dining reports, which highlight local restaurants with major health code violations.

Jason was born in Los Angeles and graduated from the University of Miami.

An avid sports fan, Jason follows the Diamondbacks, Cardinals and Suns with his wife, Karen, and son, Joshua.

His favorite stories to cover are the station’s Pay it Forward segments, which reward members of the community with $500 for going ‘above and beyond’ the call of duty to help others.

Jason, started his career at WBTW-TV in Florence, SC before moving to WALA-TV in Mobile, AL, was named the Associated Press Reporter of the Year in 2002.

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