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Miscellaneous: 17 Jul 2019
WATERLOO REGION — The sexual assault of a four-year-old Kitchener girl earlier this month is connected to the assault of two other young girls in the region over the last six years.
Police say sexual assault of 4-year-old girl linked to two other assaults
At a news conference Wednesday afternoon, Waterloo Regional Police said a DNA analysis completed by the Centre of Forensics Sciences shows the same man is responsible for all three assaults, each of which occurred in stairwells of apartment buildings.
"We believe that this individual had great familiarity with the areas of the incidents," Insp. Mark Crowell said of the suspect.
He described the sexual attacks on the children as "bold and brazen."
Crowell said the three assaults occurred in apartments "within neighbourhoods where people were active, they were playing, they were living, and that's of grave concern."
The latest assault happened July 6 at 8 p.m. when a four-year-old girl who had been playing with friends in the area of 16 Brybeck Cres.,near Belmont and Gage avenues in Kitchener, was approached by a man inside the apartment building and sexually assaulted.
Another assault occurred Oct. 27, 2017 at 318 Patricia Ave., near Belmont and Victoria Road in Kitchener.
After playing with a friend outside, a six-year-old girl went inside the apartment building around 7 p.m., where she was confronted by a man on the stairwell landing between the second and third floor and sexually assaulted.
Both Kitchener assaults happened in the Cherry Hill neighbourhood.
The third assault occurred on Oct. 20, 2013 at 429 Barrie Pl. in Waterloo near Weber Street North and King Street North.
Children were playing hide-and-seek outside the apartment building between 3 and 5 p.m. when a four-year-old girl in the group went inside for a drink of water and was grabbed and sexually assaulted.
On Wednesday, police displayed a computer-generated image of the suspect that was first released last year. "We believe that someone out there knows the person responsible for these sexual assaults," said Crowell.
"We hope that people will come forward to provide whatever information they may have to assist our investigators," he said.
Police describe the suspect as a white man, about five feet 10 inches to six feet tall, with a medium build. They are asking the public for help in identifying a man captured on video who was walking on a sidewalk in the area of Brybeck Crescent on July 6. He was wearing a white baseball hat and grey striped T-shirt.
Local officers are working with the OPP Behavioural Sciences and Analysis Services unit as well as a serial predator crime investigations co-ordinator to investigate the assaults.
Crowell said the latter is a resource provided by the Ministry of the Solicitor General in cases of linked or serial incidents that occur in one place.
"It is believed that there may be other victims who have not been yet identified," he said.
In the coming days, there will be an increased police presence in neighbourhoods throughout the region, Crowell said. Officers will be sharing information about the offences with community members. The neighbourhoods will include the ones where the assaults occurred.
Police urge parents and caregivers to be diligent while supervising their children and to immediately call police about any suspicious people interacting with their children.
Anyone with information in connection to these incidents is asked to call police at 519-570-9777, ext. 8666 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
by Liz Monteiro , Laura Booth Waterloo Region Record/AA
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