Lancashire Police have moved to clarify a response to social media rumours of an abduction in Preston over the weekend.
Earlier this afternoon, officers reacted to social media reports by refuting the claims and assuring the public that no such crime had taken place across the whole of Lancashire.
A spokesman for Preston Police tweeted: "We're aware of rumours circulating that two girls were abducted by a group of men in Preston over the weekend.
"We can confirm we've had no reports of any such incident in Lancashire. and, as far as we're concerned, these rumours are false.
"Please follow us for trusted local news."
But police now say a person held two girls in a car while they were waiting for police to arrive after making a report of criminal damage and children causing a nuisance to an empty business on Southgate.
A spokesman said this evening: "Following our earlier post, responding to claims of an abduction in Preston, we have now been able to clarify exactly what occurred and can confirm that no abduction has occurred.
"We were called at around 5.10pm yesterday (Sunday) to reports of children causing a nuisance at an empty business premises at Southgate, Preston.
"Initial reports suggested the children were on the roof of the building which had been damaged by fire and was unsafe.
"At the same time we also received a report of criminal damage to a car in the same area.
"We attended a short time later and found the person who made the call to us had briefly detained two girls in his car while he waited for officers to arrive on the scene. Words of advice were given to all parties and no serious offences were committed, or are being investigated at this time."