Edmonton

Police seek suspect in west Edmonton child abduction, sexual assault

Edmonton police are investigating after an eight-year-old girl was abducted and sexually assaulted in the city's west end Tuesday.

Suspect is man in his late 20s to mid 30s with brown hair and facial hair

Edmonton Police Service Det. Amanda Ross said incidents like the child sexual assault reported Tuesday can have a lasting impact on a community. (Craig Ryan/CBC)

Edmonton police are investigating after an eight-year-old girl was abducted and sexually assaulted in the city's west end on Tuesday. 

"Any time a serious incident like this occurs, it can have a lasting impact on the community," Det. Amanda Ross said late Wednesday.

"This is why we wanted to notify and inform the public and encourage members of the public to come forward and provide information that might assist in solving this crime."

Police said the suspect is described as a light-skinned male in his late 20s to mid-30s with brown hair and facial hair.

The girl was walking home from a residence in the area of 144th Street and 110th Avenue at 5:30 p.m. when she was approached by a vehicle, described as a white, four-door, mid-sized car or SUV.

The driver pulled the girl into the vehicle, sexually assaulted her and dropped her off nearby, police said.

The girl reported the incident to her parents, who contacted police. The girl was transported to hospital where she treated and released.

Police do not believe the suspect and child knew each other.

Kathryn MacDonald, director of investigative partnerships and supports with the Zebra Child Protection Centre, said the girl did the right thing by reporting the incident right away.

"We all have a legal and moral obligation to report suspected incidents of child abuse," MacDonald said. "So it's important that that person that they tell does take the next step to report to police. So the child and the parents did a great job and she was very brave in coming forward and sharing her story."

Officers are looking to speak with anyone who may have witnessed in the incident or seen the suspect in the McQueen neighbourhood between 3:30 p.m.and 6:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Anyone with information is asked to contact police. Anyone with dash camera footage of the area on Tuesday is asked to review their video and contact police if they see a vehicle matching the description.

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