Incident at Alexandra Primary School

Southern
The following statement can be attributed to Detective Sergeant Brian Cameron.

Following an incident at a school holiday programme at Alexandra Primary School on Thursday 12 January, a 56-year-old Canterbury man has been arrested and charged in regard to an indecent assault on a child.

The man is to appear in the Christchurch District Court on Thursday.

Police would like to thank the local community for the information they provided which assisted in identifying the man involved.

On Thursday afternoon, staff at the holiday program, noticed a man talking to a child in the playground. The man’s behaviour appeared suspicious and staff did the right thing by calling Police.

Thankfully, the child was not injured, nor do they appear to have been adversely affected by the incident and are reported to be doing well.

Police are able to reassure other parents that this appears to be an isolated incident and that they are not seeking anyone one else in relation to this.

The Ministry of Social Development, which runs the school holiday programme, and the Ministry of Education have been advised of the incident and subsequent arrest.

With the upcoming return to school it is timely for parents to take some time to discuss with their children how to keep safe.

Advice for families, whanau and caregivers:

  • We encourage families, whanau and caregivers to have discussions with their children about keeping safe.
  • Have sensible family safety guidelines.  
  • Have discussions around behaviours and actions that are inappropriate or that make them feel uncomfortable, rather than concentrating on the types of people that could harm them.  
  • Encourage children and young people to take action when they feel unsafe or uncomfortable.
  • Make it easy for your child to talk to you and tell you about anything that is bothering them.
  • Listen carefully to what your child is saying. They are unlikely to tell you directly about what is bothering them so you may need to read between the lines.      

Advice for children:

  • Remove yourself from the uncomfortable situation, no matter who it is from.
  • You must tell someone if other people make you feel unsafe, worried or scared.
  • If the first person doesn’t help, go on telling until someone listens and takes action.

ENDS

Police Media Centre

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