Waltham Forest: E-fit released after man ‘approached and grabbed’ child

In Waltham Forest, near Leyton and Walthamstow, a 10-year-old girl reported being approached twice.

An e-fit image has been released by police after a man allegedly approached and grabbed a child.

It is alleged that on Friday November 18 and Monday November 21, a man “similar in appearance” to the person in the image approached the same 10-year-old girl in the Flempton Road area of Waltham Forest as she walked to school.

On one occasion he was reported to have spoken to her and on the second occasion he is alleged to have spoken to her and grabbed her by the arm.

The man is described as white, in his 40s, around 5ft 9in tall with a medium stocky build, a bald head and a bushy black beard.

He is said to have a distinctive large black flower tattoo covering the whole of the front of his neck and another tattoo, made up of black lines, covering his left hand.

At the time of the first incident he is said to have been wearing a dark blue/black beanie hat and a dark blue zip up hoodie with a hole in.

During the second incident, he was described as wearing a light grey or white zip up hoodie with short sleeves.

On both occasions he was wearing grey jogging bottoms and black boots and he was carrying a black backpack with a number of pockets.

Detective Constable Jaime Thorn, from the North East Command Unit, said: “While the girl who was approached in these incidents was not physically hurt, she was understandably shaken and scared by what is alleged to have happened. She continues to struggle with the impact of the experience.

“Certain aspects of the description, in particular the large neck tattoo, are distinctive and I’m confident anyone who knows the person depicted in the image will recognise them. I would urge them to come forward.

“I know that any incidents where children are alleged to have been approached in the street will be a cause for concern in the community. We are in contact with the school to ensure that they have the support they need.

“While officers are keeping an open mind as to the circumstances behind the alleged incidents, initial enquiries suggest the girl was likely not approached at random and that the man may know her or those close to her. We have no information to suggest that there is a wider risk to children in the area, although we would always encourage parents or guardians to ensure adequate and appropriate safety measures are in place when children are travelling to and from school or are out on their own.”

Anyone who thinks they knows the person shown in the e-fit image is urged to call 101, giving the reference 4924383/22.

Information can also be provided to Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.