A six-year-old girl was sexually assaulted while her older brother and his friend were threatened at knifepoint and told not to run, RCMP said yesterday.

The girl, her 12-year-old brother and his friend, 15, were walking Friday evening in the 13900 block of 62nd Avenue when a man approached them with a folding knife.

He ordered the three youths into a treed area and threatened the two boys, ordering them to remain where they were. He then took the young girl to a different area and sexually assaulted her before running off.

The sex assault was reported to RCMP more than 20 hours after it happened.

Sgt. Roger Morrow, a spokesman for Surrey RCMP, said he didn’t know why there was a delay in reporting the incident.

“We don’t know if it was an issue with parental shock or what the issue was, but certainly it puts greater distance between the police and the opportunity to collect evidence or indeed locate a suspect.”

Investigators had spoken with the brother and the friend, but had not spoken directly with the young victim. Morrow said RCMP hope to pair the boys with a sketch artist.

Mounties issued a public warning, describing the attacker as a darker-skinned man in his late 20s or early 30s with a black crew cut. He has a slight accent and was wearing a blue short-sleeved shirt, blue or black pants and shiny shoes.