Arrest over sex attack on girl

Glendene Reserve. Photo NZ Herald
Glendene Reserve. Photo NZ Herald
A man has been arrested and charged over an alleged sex attack on a 6-year-old girl in a west Auckland park on New Year's Day.

The 20-year-old, from west Auckland, has been charged with kidnapping and assault with intent to commit sexual violation.

He was tracked down by police after receiving information from the public following an appeal on Friday.

The 6-year-old girl who needed hospital treatment after the incident is recovering well, police say.

The girl was playing with two other children in Glendene Reserve when the assault happened on New Year's Day. The man fled the scene when the young girl's mother ran to help after hearing her screams.

She was left traumatised and required hospital treatment for scratches, but has been recovering well, the detective in charge of the investigation said today.

"I spoke to her parents today and they're just trying to get back to some normality,'' Detective Sergeant Peter Litherland said.

"She's doing pretty good, actually.''

He said officers investigating the attack had received a lot of useful information since issuing a public appeal on Friday, in which a photo of the man's white jandals was released.

The attacker struck up a conversation with the children, who were playing near the front of the reserve at around 8.20pm. When they began to walk away from him, he grabbed the girl and carried her further into the park.

He fled the scene barefoot, leaving behind the pair of jandals.

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