Second girl attacked while walking alone

A SECOND girl has been approached by a stranger and attacked in the space of a few days as she walked alone.

The 17-year-old girl was walking on a footpath next to Church Wood Drive close to Tesco Extra in St Leonards on Sunday, February 2 when the attack happened around 5.20pm.

A man approached her from behind and put in a bear hug-type grip.

The terrified teenager managed to break free and run away to safety. She was not hurt but left badly shaken.

She described her attacker as having very strong body odour. He was wearing a raincoat that was black or very dark.

Police are not linking the incident to an assault on a 12-year-old schoolgirl who was hit over the head with a baseballbat on The Ridge on January 27.

Detective inspector Rob Morland said: “This must have been a very frightening moment for the victim but she did well to force herself free of the man and then run home to call us.

“We need to speak to anyone who was in the area around Church Wood Drive and Church Wood on sunday afternoon in case they saw anything of what happened.

“We also need to track down anyone who saw a man acting suspiciously in or around the woods. If he has approached you or someone you know please contact us.”

Extra uniformed patrols will be in the area offering reassurance and speaking to residents near both Tesco and the nearby estate.

Anyone with information can call 101 quoting serial 1039 of 2/2, email or call the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.