Webster man arrested for kidnapping, assaulting juvenile

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WEBSTER — A 68-year-old Southbridge man was arrested at Memorial Beach on Friday, after a multi-agency task force conducted a surveillance operation stemming from a report of a juvenile assault earlier in the week.

The Webster Police Department reported that on Monday, officers Patrick Trainor and Shane Murray were approached by a young girl and her grandmother in the department’s lobby.

The girl revealed that she had been lured into a car by a white male with a dog at Memorial Beach and was later assaulted before being dropped off near her home.

Following the disclosure, Webster Police, along with the Southern Worcester County Counter Crime and Drug Task Force (SWCCCDTF), increased patrols at Memorial Beach and collected evidence related to the incident.

Officers from surrounding police departments also joined in the investigation and surveillance efforts.

The juvenile provided details about the suspect’s vehicle which led to the identification of a car matching its description at the beach.

On Friday, after the victim underwent a forensic interview, task force members tracked the suspect, Walter Fanion of 60 Charlton Street #412, Southbridge, and arrested him at the beach.

Fanion has been charged with kidnapping, enticing a child under 16, and four counts of indecent assault and battery on a child under 14.

He is currently being held on $75,040 cash bail.

Webster Police are urging anyone who may have had similar encounters with Fanion to contact the Detective Bureau at 508-943-1212.

The department expressed gratitude towards all assisting agencies and commended the detectives and officers, specifically Phil Hurton, Tim Whiting, and Patrick Trainor, for their dedication to the case.

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