Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Girl jumps into Union Canal to escape sex attacker in Edinburgh

Union canal in Ratho
Image caption The girl jumped into the Union Canal at Ratho

A schoolgirl is recovering after she jumped into a canal in Edinburgh to escape a sex attacker.

The 15-year-old was grabbed from behind after she got off a bus at the bridge over the Union Canal in Ratho at about 17:30 on Wednesday.

She turned round to find that the man was exposing himself, so she struggled free and ran back towards Ratho.

When the man followed her, the teenager jumped into the canal to escape. Her attacker then ran off towards Ratho.

The girl got out after a few minutes and contacted police.

The attacker was described as being white, in his early 20s, of slim build, and between 5ft 8in and 5ft 9in tall.

'Good description'

He had short, dark spiky hair and was wearing a grey cardigan with buttons, loose jeans and was carrying a white shoulder bag.

Det Insp David Storey, of Lothian and Borders Police, said: "This has been a terrible experience for the girl involved. Although she escaped any injury, she has been understandably shaken as a result.

"She has, however, been able to provide us with a good description of the suspect and so I would appeal for anyone who may recognise him to get in touch.

"Our inquiries are at an early stage, but we believe the suspect may have also got off the bus at Ratho behind the girl, so we are keen to hear from anyone who may have been on the number X12 from Edinburgh last night, and who may have seen this man, to contact us."

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