Detectives investigating sexual assaults in Castleford release CCTV footage

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Detectives investigating sexual assaults against three young girls in Castleford have released a CCTV image of a man who they think may hold vital information.

The footage was taken from outside a corner shop at the junction of Smawthorne Grove and Willow Road on Saturday, May 31 at around 5.30pm. The man in the CCTV image is described as white, middle aged, with short hair and wearing light grey coloured trousers and a dark blue t-shirt.

DI Mark Catney, of Wakefield District CID, said: “We know the two victims were at the corner shop around the same time and I believe this man may have seen the two children shortly before the assaults took place on Saturday evening.

“I would ask him to come forward as he may hold vital information which could assist the investigation. I would also ask anyone who recognises the man to contact police.”

Police said around 90 minutes after the footage was taken two girls aged five and six were sexually assaulted as they played on an area of wasteland at the back of Garden Street.

A six-year-old girl was also sexually assaulted after playing in a park off Barnes Road between 1.20pm and 3.20pm on Sunday.

Police said she had been playing with her seven-year-old friend when they were approached by an unknown male walking a dog who spoke to the girls before assaulting the six-year-old.

A 27-year-old man, who was arrested on Sunday evening, has been released on police bail.

The sex assaults suspect has been described as a white male aged 25 to 35 years of age with light coloured short hair.

DI Catney added: “The response we have received from local residents has been really encouraging and I would like to thank them for their support while the investigation continues to progress.

“In the meantime, specially trained officers are continuing to support the families of the victims and neighbourhood officers have increased patrols across the area and are visiting local schools to promote safety messages around children not talking to strangers.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact Wakefield District CID on 101 and quoting reference number 1101 of June 1.