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Witness appeal after man with knife attempts to sexually assault teen in Bedgebury Pinetum near Hawkhurst

A man with a knife attempted to sexually assault a teenage girl near Hawkhurst.

The attack happened yesterday evening at Bedgebury Pinetum when the man approached a teen as she was sitting on a bench next to a lake accessed from Park Lane.

The attack happened in Bedgebury Pinetum Stock image
The attack happened in Bedgebury Pinetum Stock image

The suspect is said to have physically assaulted the victim who sustained injuries during the struggle.

Police were called to the area at 7.07pm and the 17-year-old victim was taken to hospital and later discharged.

An investigation is now being led by the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate.

Detective Chief Inspector Neil Kimber said: "We are working to establish the full circumstances of this incident, which happened at a fairly remote location known as Louisa Lake.

"It was a very warm day and there would have been lots of visitors to the Pinetum, including walkers and cyclists.

"I would urge anyone who may have been in or around this area to contact us if they have any information, no matter how small or insignificant it may appear."

The suspect was white and aged in his 40s.

He was wearing dark trousers - possibly jogging bottoms - and had a face mask on.

DCI Kimber added: "It is important to remember that incidents such as this remain extremely rare, however we are urging people to be vigilant and to be aware of their surroundings."

Anyone with information should call Kent Police on 01622 604100, quoting reference 46/101987/21.

You can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111, or by using the online form on their website.

To get the latest updates in ongoing cases, police appeals and criminals put behind bars, click here

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