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Warning to women after five sex attacks at Regent's Canal

PUBLISHED: 19:53 02 April 2013 | UPDATED: 19:53 02 April 2013

Archant

Police are urging the public to be vigilant along the Regent's Canal towpath, after a spate of sex attacks on women.

Each of the five incidents has seen a lone female victim grabbed from behind by a male suspect and subjected to an indecent assault.

They happened between March 11 and March 26 between the canal alongside Kingsland Road in Haggerston, Hackney and New North Road in Islington.

Traumatic

Pc Rob Gray from Islington CID said: “It’s been traumatic for the victims as any sexual assault would be.

“He’s done a mixture of things. There have been no hands under the clothes or anything like that, but it’s been touching of a sexual nature.”

He continued: “He’s tended to approach them from behind. The incidents haven’t lasted so long, they’ve lasted a minute at most, and he’s always run away shortly afterwards. They have happened between 5pm and 8pm, they are all around dusk, but one of them was in broad daylight, which is unusual.”

“We would advise people to be careful and lone females to be vigilant if they are walking along there and to be aware.”

The first incident happened on Monday March 11 at 7.05pm in Hackney on the canal towpath running parallel with Baring Street.

The most recent incident was on Tuesday, March 26 below New North Road Bridge next to Arlington Avenue, Islington.

The suspect in each case is described as a black male aged in his 20s or 30s.

A 31-year old man was arrested on March 27 and has been released on police bail.

Detectives are appealing for information from the public.

“We want anyone who has heard or seen anything unusual to call the police,” added Pc Gray.

Anyone who witnessed the incidents or noticed anyone behaving suspiciously should contact Pc Rob Gray or Det Sgt Barry Leake from CID Islington on 020 7421 0162 or 020 7421 0185, or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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