Lambeth Police are appealing for witnesses and information after two incidents – one of them near Brixton – that are being treated as abduction attempts.
The first was on Tuesday (21 March) between about 7.50 and 8am when the alleged suspect approached an 11-year-old while she was waiting for a bus near the Crown and Sceptre public house where Brixton Hill meets the South Circular.
The child declined and eventually left the area after boarding a bus. The alleged suspect remained in the area until that point and then left on foot.
The second incident was on Wednesday (22 March) at around 8am when the alleged suspect approached a 13-year-old girl near the entrance to Archbishop Park in Lambeth Road.
This time it is alleged the suspect took hold of the victim’s hand and began to drag her towards the park. It is believed that a passing dog walker shouted at the suspect and the victim was able to escape his grasp and run home.
Detectives from Lambeth CID are keeping an open mind as to whether the two incidents are linked.
The suspect in the first incident has been described as white, approximately 5ft 10ins tall with a medium build and short blond hair. He was described as wearing a black bomber-style jacket, blue jeans, and black lace-up leather shoes described as “smart looking”.
The suspect in the second incident is also described as white, approximately 35 to 40 years old. He was described as wearing black thick frame square glasses, a black baseball cap, black jacket and black trousers.
Detective Inspector Ian Kenward, from Lambeth CID, said: “These are two very worrying incidents and we appeal to anyone who was in or around the areas at the time they occurred to contact police. Any piece of information may prove valuable to the investigation.”
Any witnesses or anyone with any information are urged to contact Lambeth CID on 020 8649 2134.
To give information anonymously contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or visit crimestoppers-uk.org.
A National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children spokesperson said: “These incidents must have been terrifying experiences for the girls involved and parents in the area will be understandably worried but – thankfully – random abductions of children are relatively rare.
“It’s essential that those responsible are caught as soon as possible and that both girls are offered any support they need.
“There is a handy guide for parents with tips about how to keep young children safe while away from the home available on the NSPCC’s website.”