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Winnipeg police find person of interest in alleged mall fluid assault case

Police find person of interest in mall fluid case

Winnipeg police say they're waiting for a forensic examination of a substance a man allegedly sprayed on a teenage girl in a shopping mall before deciding whether to lay charges.

Investigators released a security image on Saturday from the St. Vital Centre of someone they describe as a person of interest, who they say they later found and interviewed.

They say he has been co-operative.

Police say a group of girls were in the mall on February 19 when they observed a strange man closely following them.

They say the girls tried to evade him by entering a store, but just outside the shop he appeared to spray or deposit an unknown substance on the clothing of one of the girls.

Police say he remained in the area for a brief period before fleeing.

"Members of the Sex Crimes Unit continued to investigate and due to the support of the public, the person of interest previously described has been positively identified," police said in a news release Sunday.

Police say the girls were not injured as a result of the incident.

Last week when police announced they were looking into the incident, investigators said the substance may have been a bodily fluid.

Police spokesman Const. Jason Michalyshen said the girls were clearly uncomfortable as the suspect followed them.

Michalyshen did not speculate on what charges could be laid other than to say it was "a form of assault."

The Canadian Press