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Horror double rape at church

PUBLISHED: 19:01 23 January 2002 | UPDATED: 11:14 03 March 2010

DETECTIVES are today hunting two sex attackers who carried out a double rape on an Ipswich woman near the centre of town.

The attackers, who both appeared to be in their early 20s and were white, struck between 9.

DETECTIVES are today hunting two sex attackers who carried out a double rape on an Ipswich woman near the centre of town.

The attackers, who both appeared to be in their early 20s and were white, struck between 9.30pm and midnight yesterday in the area of St Margarets Parish church on the corner of St Margarets Green and Bolton Lane.

The pair approached their 36-year-old victim before attacking and raping her.

The officer leading the hunt for the rapists, Detective Inspector John Quinton, said: "The victim was deeply traumatised by the attack and we have only just started to piece together the details of what happened to her.

"It's extremely important that we identify and speak to anyone who was in the St Margarets Green/Bolton Lane area of Ipswich last night between 9.30pm and midnight, particularly anyone who may have seen a lone woman with two men."

The attack happened close to the area where a 92-year-old woman was raped on March 1, last year, as she returned from a shopping trip in town.

The pensioner was dragged backwards on Cobbold Street before being subjected to the sex attack which happened near garages at the back of terraced houses at around 6.20pm. The rapist has not been found and police said today it was too early to link the two attacks.

St Margarets Parish Church and graveyard were completely sealed off today with police tape.

The side entrance on Bolton Lane remained locked and a group of several mourners wishing to visit graves were turned away.

Detectives and Scenes of Crimes officers were present in the churchyard and were visiting businesses in the St Margarets Green area.

The church which is usually open to the public between 8am and 2pm is expected to be closed for the whole day and the morning prayer service usually at 8.50am was cancelled.

Semi-retired verger Ernest Caddick told how an early morning call from the Reverend David Cutts, vicar at St Margarets alerted him to the drama.

"The vicar rung me up at 8am and told me there had been an incident at church and the police had cordoned it off. But he didn't know any details and neither did I."

Mr Cutts said he had very few details on what had taken place but that police had told him there had been a "major" incident. He said: "Of course we are willing to do anything to help. The police must do all they possibly can to find out what happened."

Both attackers had spiky hair on top and were dressed in smart-casual clothing.

A spokeswoman for Suffolk police said that the rape had been reported just after 2am.

Anyone with information should contact detectives on 01473 613500 or Crimestoppers on freephone 0800 555 111.

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