Pair arrested in Ipswich as checks carried out week after violent Rope Walk rape by two men

The scene of the rape in Rope Walk, Ipswich last weekend. Picture: ASHLEY PICKERING

The scene of the rape in Rope Walk, Ipswich last weekend. Picture: ASHLEY PICKERING - Credit: Ashley Pickering

Police investigating a rape in Ipswich have arrested two men today.

Police investigating a rape in Ipswich have arrested two men today, following a series of checks in the area a week on.

In the early hours of Saturday, February 25, at some point between 3.10am and 3.30am, a woman in her late 20s was walking along Rope Walk away from the town centre.

While crossing Grimwade Street, she was approached from behind and grabbed by two unknown men and had her mouth covered.

The victim was forced into a car park area nearby, where she was physically assaulted and raped.

The horrific attack was believed to have lasted several minutes before the offenders made off on foot.

The woman was left unconscious and suffered significant injuries to her face and neck that required hospital treatment. Trained specialist officers and police staff continue to work with the victim who is recovering from the attack.

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Police issued CCTV images of two men they were looking to trace following the incident, with officers this evening confirming that two men had been arrested.

They remain in custody at Martlesham police investigation centre for questioning.

Officers have this morning, Saturday March 4, carried out checks in the vicinity of Rope Walk between 2.45am and 4am and have spoken to a number of people who assisted with their enquiries.

Police presence

Increased police patrols took place throughout the evening to provide reassurance to people out and about, and officers also delivered appeal posters to businesses in the night time economy between 11pm on Saturday and 2.45am on Sunday. This included pubs, bars, clubs, taxi firms and food outlets.

The increased patrols will continue tonight. Extensive police enquiries have been taking place in and around Ipswich town centre since the attack occurred, including forensic, house to house, and CCTV work.

Yesterday, detectives issued new CCTV images of two men that they want to trace in connection with the incident, including moving footage.

Officers are also appealing to trace two women who are believed to have had an altercation with these men inside Bowman’s Bar in Falcon Street earlier that night.

Detective Superintendent Eamonn Bridger, who is leading the investigation, said: “I am grateful to all those members of the public who took the time to speak with officers last night and assist with our enquiries.

“There has been a good response from the community of Ipswich and a clear intent to help the police. Information provided to us by the local community is vital in this inquiry, as any piece of intelligence, however small it may seem, could prove to be crucial in our efforts to identify who is responsible for this horrific crime.

“I am continuing to appeal for anyone who believes that they know the two men pictured in the CCTV to come forward immediately. We are also still keen to trace two women who we believe encountered these men inside Bowman’s Bar. They could be vital witnesses who may be able to provide us with important information.”

Any information could be vital

Anyone with information about this attack is asked to contact police as a matter of urgency.

This includes anyone who may have witnessed or heard the attack, who believes they know the men pictured in the CCTV, or who may have seen two men acting suspiciously in, or walking towards, the Rope Walk area of town between 3.10am and 3.30am in the early hours of Saturday morning.

Officers are also keen to talk to anybody who may have seen the two men pictured in the CCTV during the evening of Friday, February 24 and the early morning of Saturday, around Ipswich. This could include taxi drivers, pub or club workers, food outlet employees or members of the public.

Police would also ask that anyone with dash cam footage who may have been driving in the area at the time of the offence to come forward.

• Anyone with any information should contact Suffolk police on 101 quoting CAD number 172 of February 28. Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or through their anonymous online form at www.crimestoppers-uk.org

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