Police investigate reports of man taking dummies from babies

Essex Police said four incidents around Harlow had been reported between February 10 and August 7.

Police are investigating a series of incidents where a man approached people with babies and removed the infants’ dummies.

Essex Police said four incidents around Harlow had been reported between February 10 and August 7.

On one occasion a child was also assaulted, the force said.

The man is described as slim, white and in his 20s, with light-brown eyes and yellow teeth.

Essex Police
An image of a man police want to speak to (Essex Police/PA)

Police have released an image of a man they would like to speak to in connection with the incidents.

The image, which was taken from behind and does not show a face, shows a person in a black hooded top and carrying a black Nike bag with a white logo.

Essex Police hope people recognise the clothing and want anyone who recognises the man, or has seen someone matching the description acting suspiciously, to contact them.

Chief Inspector Paul Austin, District Commander for Harlow, said: “This is a series of unusual incidents and, as a parent myself, I understand the level of concern they will cause.

An officer on patrol
An officer on patrol after reports of a man removing babies’ dummies in Harlow, Essex (Essex Police/PA)

“However, I want to reassure the people of Harlow that we have detectives dedicated to investigating these incidents, have linked previous incidents, and my teams will be visible out in the community to provided reassurance.

“I would urge you to continue going about your daily business as usual but be vigilant of anyone acting suspiciously.

“I need anyone who has information or recognises this person to contact us.”

Police asked for anyone with information, CCTV, dashcam or other footage in relation to these incidents to contact the force on 101 or to call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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