15 June 2024

Police appeal for information after man poses as taxi driver

Wiltshire Police are appealing for information after a suspicious incident involving a man posing as a taxi driver in Salisbury.

In the early hours of 11th September, a woman got into a silver car in Millstream Approach believing it was a taxi she had booked with a local firm.

The driver of the car then behaved in an inappropriate way, making sexual comments and touching the woman on her leg.

She told him to stop the vehicle and got out near to St Mark’s Roundabout, phoning a family member to pick her up.

PC Mark Douglas, from the Salisbury Area Community Policing Team, said, “Thankfully the woman wasn’t injured in any way, but she was left feeling very uncomfortable and afraid by the way this man was acting.

“We have made enquiries locally and we do not believe the suspect was a legitimate taxi driver, but was instead acting in an opportunistic way to try to get a woman into his car.

“This is a very worrying incident and we would urge anyone who can assist with our enquiries to get in touch. We would also like to hear from anyone else who believes they may have been approached in a similar way by this man.”

The man is described as possibly Eastern European, and of a large build, and he was driving a silver saloon car.

PC Douglas added: “We want everyone to feel safe in Salisbury, particularly those who are out visiting our restaurants, bars and clubs on a night out.

“Please be reassured that we have a visible policing presence in the city, and we carry out regular, proactive patrols to keep our night-time economy safe“.

Proactive operation Project Vigilant launched in Wiltshire earlier this month with the aim of ensuring that people feel safe on nights out across the county.

In addition to the high visibility patrols already carried out by our Community Policing Teams, both uniformed officers and plain clothed officers will target pubs and clubs in towns and cities across the county in September and October.

The police believe that visible policing presence acts as a deterrent to potential perpetrators and provides additional reassurance for the wider public.

Officers, following guidance from the National Crime Agency, also identify people who are out socialising in our bars and nightclubs and are displaying potential indicators of predatory behaviour.

The idea is that these officers can then take action, to intervene before a crime is committed.

You can read more about Project Vigilant here.

Anyone who can assist with this investigation, including anyone who might have been driving at that time of the morning and may have dash cam footage, should call PC Douglas on 101, quoting crime reference 54210088622.

Alternatively you can call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

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Beth Doherty
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Written by Beth Doherty