WINDSOR, ONT. -- Chatham-Kent police are investigating after a 16-year-old girl was assaulted while sitting under the Keil Street bridge waiting for a friend.

Police say officers responded to the report Wednesday in Chatham where they learned around 4:30 p.m. a 16-year-old girl was sitting under the bridge when an unknown man stopped to talk to her.

Police say the man sat down, touched the girl’s thigh and grabbed her wrist to pull her closer to him.

He fled when the girl’s friend arrived.

Police describe the suspect as a white man, around 40 years old, with a tall average build. He has medium length brown hair that was slicked back and a long thick beard. He was last seen wearing glasses, an orange shirt and cargo pants.

The Major Crime unit has taken over the investigation.

Chatham-Kent police have offered the following safety tips:

  • When possible, avoid walking alone
  • Avoid shortcuts through parks, vacant lots or wooded trails
  • Always carry a cell phone
  • If you are in danger, call 911 immediately

Police are asking anyone with information to contact Rachele Marineau at rachelem@chatham-kent.ca or 519-436-6600 extension #668.  Anonymous callers may call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) and may be eligible for a cash reward.