Girl (6) 'victim of sex assault by schoolboy' in south Belfast
Police are investigating a report that a six-year-old girl has been indecently assaulted by an older schoolboy.
The incident is reported to have taken place in the Taughmonagh estate in south Belfast on Friday.
The PSNI said the alleged attack happened in Findon Gardens between 4.20pm and 4.50pm.
Local reports suggest that a 14-year-old schoolboy may have been responsible for the assault.
Balmoral councillor Ruth Patterson said the local community was extremely upset and has been rallying around the family of the little girl.
She said that in her time as a councillor she had never heard of anything like this happening in Taughmonagh before.
"The whole community is very much distraught about this – it is a close-knit community," she said.
"The crime figures over recent years that were quite high at one stage are now zero.
"There is a great working relationship with the police, with local groups around the area and a great football team – everything has been on the up and then this happens. It's absolutely appalling.
"Everyone is so distraught. But we need to give the police time to make sure they can get evidence.
"The whole community is extremely upset and they are rallying around the family in question."
The DUP councillor said the attack had come totally out of the blue.
"The area has been coming on in leaps and bounds, with a great youth club. A lot of parents from within the community have been very much involved to ensure that young people remain off the streets rather than hanging around street corners," she said.
PSNI Detective Sergeant Ciara Mullan said: "I would appeal to anyone with any information that they feel might help the investigation to contact us."
A police spokesman said if anyone has information the number to call is 101 and ask for extension 17225.