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Rapist could be a changed man

PUBLISHED: 12:00 21 December 2001 | UPDATED: 11:04 03 March 2010

A CHUBBY sex attacker who raped a young mother in Ipswich could be acting "out of character" after a nationwide TV appeal to track him down, police today said.

A CHUBBY sex attacker who raped a young mother in Ipswich could be acting "out of character" after a nationwide TV appeal to track him down, police today said.

Millions of viewers watched a harrowing reconstruction of the events leading up to the rape of a 19-year-old on the BBC's Crimewatch UK programme yesterday.

The man heading the rape hunt, Detective Inspector John Quinton, today urged people to watch for "anyone who is acting out of character" either after the July 28 attack or as a result of the massive media attention generated by last night's TV appeal to find him.

The brutal attacker befriended the young mum, from the Colchester area, as she sat crying on a bench opposite Ipswich rail station on Ranelagh Road minutes after she had left Kartouche nightclub at around 12.20am following a row with friends.

The teenager, who had only been to Ipswich once, was going to meet her boyfriend when the attacker approached her and gained her trust, offering to walk with her.

He lured her to a footpath off Stone Lodge Lane, via Ranelagh Road and Birkfield Drive, where he subjected her to a terrifying attack and then told her he was "helping nature"

Police are today tracing a list of names put forward by people following the Crimewatch reconstruction which prompted 66 calls to officers.

DI Quinton said: "Many names have been put to us and in the next few days we will be going through [them]."

Police have the rapist's DNA which will enable them to rule any one not connected with the attack out of the inquiry, he added. Police spokesman Steve Henry confirmed that around 150 men had already had DNA samples taken and had been ruled out the inquiry so far.

A major breakthrough from last night's appeal was that a man police wanted to trace who had been walking in Birkfield Drive around the time of the attack had come forward and would be speaking with officers, Mr Henry added.

DI Quinton said the last six months had been "agony" for teenaged victim since the brutal rape.

The rapist was white, in his early 20s, around 5ft 8ins tall, of plump build with short, spiky brown hair.

Anyone with information should contact the rape incident room on 01473 613999 or Crimestoppers, in confidence on 0800 555 111.


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