A 16-year-old boy was lured into a van after the driver promised him a lift home, only to be locked in the vehicle and sexually assaulted after a shopping trip. The schoolboy had missed his last train home from Birmingham city centre when the suspect, driving a silver van, offered him a lift home on Wednesday 30 November.
West Midlands Police say the teenager was walking to a bus stop in Kent Street, just a few hundred metres from the city centre, at about 10pm when he was offered the lift. He was then driven to Claybrook Street, just a 100 metres away, and it was there that he was subjected to a serious sexual assault, after being locked inside the vehicle, according to the police.
The force say the suspect they are looking for is a chubby Asian man in his 40s or 50s, with short black hair, a short pointed nose and "bad breath". Detectives investigating the case have published CCTV images of the suspect's van and are urging anyone who may recognise the vehicle to get in touch.
Investigating officer Sarah Harvey from West Midlands Police's Public Protection Unit, said: "The boy had been out on a shopping trip and had missed his last train home...he was walking to the bus stop when the van driver approached and offered a lift.
"He accepted but moments later was locked in the van and assaulted. The boy was not physically injured but was clearly left very badly shaken by the ordeal."
She added: "He has given us a detailed description of the offender; in-particular he is described as being unkempt in appearance, with stubble and with bad breath. The interior of the van was also very untidy with rubbish on the floor and paperwork on the dashboard.
"We've conducted extensive CCTV and ANPR enquiries and have secured an image of the van we believe was involved. It's distinctive in so much that it was carrying a ladder set on the roof and so may well be a works vehicle.
"If anyone believes they know who uses this van or have seen it then please contact me as soon as possible."