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Increase in sexual assaults stemming from online dating say Winnipeg police

Winnipeg police say there's been a rash of sexual assaults connected to online dating sites.
Winnipeg police say there's been a rash of sexual assaults connected to online dating sites. File / Global News

Police say they’re investigating a rash of sexual assaults connected to online dating sites and are warning Winnipeggers to use caution when meeting anyone online.

“This mode of dating allows criminals to remain anonymous while taking advantage of unsuspecting persons,” reads a release from police Friday.

Police released tips for people using online dating sites:

  • Only use credible dating sites, especially ones that require a fee.
  • Thoroughly vet online sites.
  • Check the name of the person you are meeting through an online search engine.
  • Beware of personal risks and meet for the first time in a public place.
  • Don’t meet someone alone for the first time, or at least tell a friend or family member about whom you are meeting and where you are meeting them.
  • Give a friend or family member the contact information of the person you’re meeting and a screenshot of the ad you met them through.
  • Be wary of requests for money.
  • Trust your instincts.

To report a sexual assault call 911 in emergency situations or 204-986-6222 in non-emergency situations.

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Resources are also available for victims of sexual assault at the winnipeg police website.

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