York regional police have released security video that they say shows a man sexually assaulting a woman near Upper Canada Mall in Newmarket.
On Tuesday, police issued a warning after another sexual assault was reported that morning in the Yonge Street and Green Lane area.
Police say a 29-year-old woman was walking through the parking lot of a grocery store around 11:30 a.m. when a man approached her from behind and grabbed her buttocks. He the fled the area.
So far, police say there have been five sexual assaults reported in Newmarket since mid-August.
The suspect description is the same in each case: White, 20 to 25 years old, around five-feet five-inches tall, between 125 to 130 pounds and a thin build. He is also wearing a hoodie with the hood up and pants.
The first alleged sexual assault occurred on Aug. 18 at around 5:50 p.m. Police say a 19-year-old woman was walking along a fence near the Upper Canada Mall parking lot. When she walked past a man near Gail Parks Crescent, police say he turned around, ran up behind her and grabbed her buttocks. He then jumped over the fence and into the parking lot.
A similar assault took place on Sept. 8. Police say a 34-year-old woman was walking from Matthew Boyd Crescent towards the mall parking lot around 7:30 a.m. when she stopped to send a text message. A man approached her from behind and grabbed her buttocks.
Watch video of that incident below, or click here for a mobile-friendly link.
Later on Sept. 8, around 2:30 p.m., a man approached a 17-year-old girl from behind and grabbed her buttocks. He was wearing a hooded sweatshirt with the hood pulled over his face. At the time, the girl was walking from the mall and into a subdivision on Gail Park Crescent, near Upper Canada mall.
In another incident, police say an 18-year-old woman was walking in the Aspenwood Drive area around 9:25 a.m. on Sept. 25 when she was pushed to the ground. The man tried to take off her clothing, but he fled the scene when a passerby approached. Police say she was not seriously injured.
Police believe the suspect is targeting small-statured and thin women, who may be distracted by their phones or music devices.
Const. Laura Nicolle told 680 NEWS on Tuesday that investigators will be “stopping and speaking to anyone who might potentially match that description.”
Nicolle said they do have a few extra details to go on, such as the fact four of the five attacks happened on a Tuesday, and that the suspect “has a tendency to pace back and forth prior to committing these incidents.”
NEWMARKET SEXUAL ASSAULT UPDATE – Suspect is targeting females wearing headphones or distracted by their phone. Be aware of surroundings.
— York Regional Police (@YRP) October 13, 2015