DETECTIVES investigating two sexual assaults in York city centre say they are trying to determine if they are linked.

A woman was sexually assaulted in the early hours of Thursday, July 13, after leaving a nightclub, but North Yorkshire Police said they could not confirm the exact location of the attack.

Police want to hear from anyone who was in the area at the time and who may have seen anything suspicious.

The second victim was sexually assaulted as she walked along the riverside path between Bridge Street and the Park Inn between 12.30am and 12.45am on Saturday, July 15.

The woman ran away following the attack, and described her assailant as an Asian man in his thirties, about five feet six or seven inches tall, with a shaved head and prominent hairline. He was wearing a dark jacket, dark trousers and white trainers and had a white bicycle with him at the time.

Police said they want to speak to a man and woman who walked past the walled garden at about the time of the attack. A spokesman said they were not believed to be connected with the incident, but may have important information.

The spokesman said officers were checking CCTV from the areas around both attacks, and working to establish whether the two incidents are connected.

Detective Chief Inspector Dave Ellis said: "Both of these investigations are in their early stages and we’re currently exploring whether they are linked.

"We’re urging anyone who was in the area at the time and may have seen something suspicious, or has any other information about these incidents, to get in touch with police."

Extra uniformed patrols will be in the area over coming days, and both victims are receiving specialist support.

Anyone with information about either incident should phone 101, select option two and ask for York Serious Crime Team quoting incident number 12170122739 when passing on information about the first incident or 12170124262 when passing on information about the second.

Alternatively, phone Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.