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Detectives identify 'Ghillie suit' worn during sexual assault of child - SCC Sex Crimes Squad

Sunday, 09 July 2017 12:40:35 AM

Detectives investigating the sexual assault of a girl on her way to school and the attempted abduction of a teen on the Central Coast are renewing their appeal for assistance after identifying clothing of interest.

Local police were contacted after a 12-year-old girl disclosed that she had been sexually assaulted by an unknown man while walking to school on Monday 15 May 2017.

Officers were told the girl was walking along a pathway between Reeves and Carrington Streets at Narara, about 7.45am, when a man grabbed her from behind, took her into nearby bushland, where she was tied up with cable ties, and sexually and indecently assaulted.

The girl escaped, made her way to school and reported the incident. She taken to hospital for treatment and has since physically recovered from her injuries.

Detectives from the State Crime Command’s Sex Crimes Squad, assisted by Brisbane Water Local Area Command and the Child Abuse Squad, commenced an investigation under Strike Force Garawan.

Strike Force investigators are also investigating the attempted abduction of an 18-year-old woman near Narara Railway Station on Sunday 4 June 2017.

Officers were told the woman got off a train just before 4.30pm, and walked along Narara Valley Drive and into the laneway leading to Koninderie Parade, when she was approached from behind by an unknown man who grabbed her around the neck.

The woman told police she kicked back at the man, breaking free from his grip, and ran toward Koninderie Parade calling out for help. She contacted Triple Zero after seeing the man walk away toward Narara Valley Drive.

Both girls described the man as being aged in his mid-20s, 175-180cm tall, with a chubby build, grey/blond hair, and blue eyes. They also described various items of camouflage clothing.

With the assistance of the girls, detectives have been able to piece together the outfit the man was wearing at the time of the first incident.

Sex Crimes Squad Commander, Detective Superintendent Linda Howlett, urged the community to take the time to have a good look at the items to see if they recognise anything familiar.

“Investigators have been working closely with the girls to determine what they believe the man was wearing at the time of the incidents,” Det Supt Howlett said.

“As you can imagine, it has been a difficult process, particularly for the younger girl, who has bravely relived the incident over and over to help us.

“The clothing was described as a ‘3D, leafy Ghille suit’, which is quite distinct, but it is widely available and may not necessarily have been purchased at the same time – or even purchased recently.

“While we continue with our inquiries on that front, we are appealing to the community to help narrow down our search.”

Detectives also believe the man involved in the incidents would be very familiar with the Narara area.

“The incidents occurred in areas that are well-used by locals, and would require a certain amount of familiarity to be in the right place at the most opportunistic time,” Det Supt Howlett said.

“In addition, it would be difficult to get around suburbia wearing these clothes without drawing attention to yourself, so we believe he’d know the best routes to use to go unnoticed.

“Anyone who knows someone who fits the description and who would have access to an outfit like this is urged to get in touch with us as soon as possible,” Det Supt Howlett said.

Members of the public are urged not to approach the man if sighted, but to contact Triple Zero (000) immediately.

Police are urging anyone with information that may assist Strike Force Garawan detectives to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page: https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au/ Information you provide will be treated in the strictest of confidence. We remind people they should not report crime information via our Facebook and Twitter pages.