Three attempted child abductions have been linked to the same pervert who, in one particularly disturbing case, attempted to snatch a 10-year-old girl while he was naked from the waist down.
All incidents have taken place in the last three weeks, twice in Navan and once in Trim, prompting gardaí to urge parents to be on their guard.
In all three cases, the predator attempted to lure his female victims — two of whom were just 10 — into his car.
Gardaí have asked parents to be extra vigilant and look out for suspicious activity around housing estates.
The incidents in Navan took place on consecutive days just over a week ago.
The first involved a 10-year-old girl from Canterbrook estate who was approached on the afternoon of August 3 by a man who tried to bribe her to get in his car by offering her sweets.
After the girl refused and told her mother, gardaí carried out door-to-door inquiries in the area, establishing the man was white, with blonde, spiked hair and driving a navy car.
The following day, a similar description was given for a man who attempted to lure a 15-year-old girl into his car at a similar location.
The description of the man was given as being late 30s or early 40s and with either blond or reddish spiky hair. Like before, a dark blue saloon car was spotted in the area between Canterbrook and Balreask Manor on the Trim road between 8pm and 9pm that night.
A similar incident is being investigated by gardaí in Trim, when another 10-year-old girl was approached by a man exposed below the waist, driving a navy blue Nissan Primera or Almera. The car followed the girl to near her home just off the Trim Road on July 23.
When she was just a few yards away from her house, he called her over to the car. When she saw he was naked from the waist down, she ran home.
Garda Sergeant Dean Kerins, the county’s crime prevention officer, said: “It is important that any suspicious activity be reported to the gardaí in Navan immediately.
“Should an incident occur, vital information, such as car description, colour, make or registration, if possible, should be obtained. An accurate description of any persons in the car, if possible, should also be noted.”
He added: “Please be extra vigilant and always keep an eye on all children within your estate.”
lNavan gardaí can be reached on 046-9021445. Trim gardaí can be contacted on 046-9481540.