Police step up patrols after a man grabs a young girl’s arm as she walks to school in March

Cavalry Primary School head teacher Fiona McCallum

Cavalry Primary School head teacher Fiona McCallum - Credit: Archant

Parents have been warned to make sure children stay in groups and police patrols have been stepped up after a man tried to grab a young girl’s arm as she walked to school.

Two pupils from Cavalry Primary School were taking a short cut through an alleyway next to the dentists surgery in Upwell Road when they saw two men who were sitting on logs and were smoking.

One of the men tried to grab one of the girls’ arms but the pair ran away.

The incident has prompted a letter to all parents from Cavalry headteacher, Fiona McCallum, who praised the quick thinking of the youngsters who ran away and reported it immediately.

“The children are safe and unharmed but were frightened by the men’s behaviour,” she said.

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“We are proud that our children handled the incident so sensibly by running away and reporting their concerns immediately to a teacher.

“The police have been informed and have assured me that there have been no other incidents reported in the area.

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“Nevertheless, for those older children who walk to school unaccompanied it is a good opportunity to remind them about staying safe by sticking together with their friends and taking routes which use public pathways.”

The incident happened on Tuesday (22) at about 8.30am involving two unknown men and two pupils.

“If you were in the area at the time and saw anything which could be helpful I am sure the police would be pleased to hear from you,” she said.

Police were called at about 9.10am after the school immediately reported the incident.

A police spokesman said: “As they were walking they saw two men who were sat smoking on logs.

“One of the men tried to grab one of the girls’ arms, but they managed to run away.

“One of the men is described as wearing a grey or black long-sleeved hoody, with the hood up, black jeans and white or grey hair poking out at the front of his hood.”

They added: “We would like to reassure the public that we believe this is an isolated incident as there have been no other similar reports, however, as a precautionary measure, we have increased patrols in the area.”

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

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