'It's only a matter of time': Lead investigator's vow to catch 11-year-old girl's rapist

The lead detective investigating the rape of an 11-year-old Newcastle schoolgirl has told 7 News they were closing in on her attacker.

They now have video from security cameras and dashboard cameras that could provide a breakthrough.

Detective Superintendent John Kerlatec is the man who has the task of catching the violent predator.

Police say they are closing in on the man who sexually assaulted an 11-year-old girl. Source: 7 News
Detective Superintendent John Kerlatec is the man who has been tasked with catching the violent predator. Source: 7 News

A 10-year veteran of the child abuse and sex crimes squad, he told 7 News the young girl is “very brave” and was “committed to assisting our investigators and finding the person responsible for this crime”.

Det Supt Kerlatec is confident his team will soon identify a suspect.

“We are closer, we’re closer because we have moved some 3, 4 days from the event,” he said.

The man is described as chubby with short dark hair, wrinkles on his forehead and mouth, brown stains on his teeth, and wearing a dark grey and black hoodie.

He was driving a red sedan when he dropped his victim at the car park of Kotara railway station about 2.15pm on Tuesday.

The man is believed to have been driving a red sedan. Source: 7 News

The carpark is adjacent to a busy road and behind it is a tennis club, meaning someone is likely to have seen something that afternoon.

“We won’t give up on this investigation until we find the person responsible,” Det Supt Kerlatec said.

“It’s only a matter of time.”

Anyone with information is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page.

Police said they will not stop until they find the attacker. Source: 7 News