WATCH: Women are being warned to be careful after a string of disturbing incidents in Gordon Head, including sexual assault. But did police wait too long to issue a warning? Tess van Straaten reports.
People in Gordon Head are on edge, after a string of disturbing incidents in the residential neighbourhood around Mount Doug Park.
There have been a total of five incidents involving a man in his 20’s, all in close proximity, and all in the late afternoon or early evening.
The first was around 5:30 pm July 4th at Blair Avenue and Larchwood.
A man riding a skateboard wearing a white baseball hat grabbed a woman on the buttocks.
About two hours later at nearby Lambrick Park, a man on a skateboard came up behind a woman jogging and stuck his hand up the back of her shorts.
The next day, on July 5th, a man was seen masturbating on Mileva Lane around 5 pm.
The day after that, on July 6th. a man masturbating while riding a bike rode by another woman.
Then, on July 7th, in the lower parking lot at Mount Doug Park, a man wearing a white baseball hat exposed himself to a woman walking her dog and then fled on a bike.
“It’s certainly concerning,” says Saanich Police S/Sgt. Chris Horsley. “Although this person is young, they’ve escalated to the point where they’re willing to confront and physically grab people so women walking or jogging need to be vigilant.”
All of the incidents took place the first week of July, which has many people wondering why police waited so long to warn the public.
But Saanich Police say it took a few days to analyze the data.
“We’re now quite confident that they could be related, therefore that’s the reason in waiting and putting it out now,” says S/Sgt. Horsley.
Police investigating whether Gordon Head sex assaults linked to Langford Lake assault
Police are also looking at whether it’s linked to a similar assault at Langford Lake Monday, but say it’s unlikely given the distance between the attacks.
Investigators say the cases are very similar, so they’re not yet ruling it out.
The suspect is described as having a tan or darker skin and is short with short hair and always had a bike or skateboard.
Police hope to identify him before another attack.
Anyone with any information is asked to call the Saanich Police tip line at 250-475-4356.