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Mail drop in bid to catch rapist

PUBLISHED: 14:38 22 October 2001 | UPDATED: 10:43 03 March 2010

DETECTIVES investigating the rape of a 19-year-old woman today sent out a new message to the public - "Trust us with your suspicions."

The woman, who comes from the Colchester area, was raped in Stone Lodge Lane, Ipswich, on Saturday, July 28, after spending a night out with friends.

DETECTIVES investigating the rape of a 19-year-old woman today sent out a new message to the public – "Trust us with your suspicions."

The woman, who comes from the Colchester area, was raped in Stone Lodge Lane, Ipswich, on Saturday, July 28, after spending a night out with friends.

Extensive forensic examinations, including tests for DNA, have given police the means to move the enquiry forward.

This means officers now have a completely accurate method which can eliminate people whose names are put forward in connection with the enquiry.

Police said anyone who has even the slightest suspicion about an individual can come forward and speak in confidence – reassured that their information cannot lead police in the wrong direction.

Det Supt Roy Lambert, who is leading the investigation, said today: "The results of forensic tests have given us a firm scientific foundation from which to build our enquiries.

"Importantly, we now have the means to efficiently and accurately eliminate anyone whose name is put forward.

"My message to people is simply this: "If you have any suspicions about who the rapist may be, call us immediately. A simple test can now give a definitive answer as to whether or not that particular man was involved in this incident.

"The more names we receive, and the more men we eliminate, the more the net closes on the rapist."

Already detectives have eliminated more than 100 people by using the test.

Now, in a bid to encourage more people to come forward with names, police are sending out 4,000 leaflets to Ipswich homes, contained in a distinctive envelope.

The envelope has an E-fit of the rapist on it, with the message: "Who is he?"

Inside is a personal letter from Det Supt Lambert appealing for information.

"We are putting the leaflet through the door of homes in the immediate area of where the attack took place," he said.

"I realise that many items of mail go straight from the door mat to the bin. But I would ask people to look out for the distinctive envelope and take time to read the letter inside.

"You could be the person who comes up with a crucial name or piece of information which leads us to the rapist."

The rape victim left the Kartouche Nightclub Princes Street, at about 12.20am on July 28 and walked in the direction of the railway station, where she sat down on a bench.

While she was sitting on the bench, she was approached by the rapist – a white man in his early 20s, about 5ft 8ins to 5ft 9ins tall, of plump build, with short spiky brown hair, clean-shaven and wearing a blue shirt and dark trousers.

He then walked with her along Ranelagh Road, towards Rogers Newsagents, before crossing the road, going under the railway bridge and walking up Birkfield Drive.

They then turned left down Stone Lodge Lane and then on to a footpath near Pauls Sports and Social Club, where he raped her.

A Rape Incident Room has been set up and about 20 officers are working on the investigation.

Anyone with information should contact the Rape Incident Room on (01473) 613999 or call Crimestoppers on freephone 0800 555 111 or e-mail incident.room@suffolk.police.uk.

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