Tests hope in hunt for rapist

PUBLISHED: 14:37 01 August 2001 | UPDATED: 15:16 03 March 2010

DETECTIVES hunting a plump rapist who lured his teenaged victim to an Ipswich footpath before attacking her are hoping forensic tests may help identify the assailant.

DETECTIVES hunting a plump rapist who lured his teenaged victim to an Ipswich footpath before attacking her are hoping forensic tests may help identify the assailant.

A police spokesman revealed today that officers were "in the process of sending off samples but it is too early to say whether there is any forensic evidence".

Scenes of crimes officers conducted a search of the path where the brutal attack happened off Stone Lodge Lane in the early hours of Saturday morning. Detectives would have looked for any shred of evidence that may link the criminal to his horrific crime.

Forensic experts are likely to carry out tests for DNA in their analysis of any possible evidence found at the scene where the 19-year-old was raped.

Yesterday, detectives began house-to-house inquiries near the rape scene.

The teenaged victim, who comes from the Colchester area, is "traumatised" by the attack which has "completely shattered her confidence," the police spokesman said.

Police have been disappointed to the response so far to appeals for information from the public about the rape. The rape incident room – which has 20 officers working on the case at Martlesham headquarters – has only received a handful of calls in spite of high profile media appeals.

Detective Superintendent Roy Lambert, who is leading the hunt for the rapist who gained his victim's trust before attacking her, said: "The public holds the key to solving this crime."

The victim left the Kartouche nightclub on Prince's Street at about 12.30am on Saturday, July 28. She then walked to the nearby Ipswich rail station and sat down on a bench where the man approached her.

He then lured her up Birkfield Drive and on to a footpath of Stone Lodge Lane under the pretext of helping her find the Copdock interchange where her boyfriend was to collect her. It was in the lane near the Pauls Sports and Social Club that he raped her.

"We know there will have been many people about at that time of night, particularly in the area of the railway station," Det Supt Lambert said. "I need people to cast their minds back to the weekend. They may have seen the victim crying on the bench or seen her with the rapist, either on the bench or walking to the scene of the attack, but mistakenly believed they were a couple."

He appealed for any one who was in the area between midnight and 1.30am on Saturday, or who may have seen the teenager or a man fitting the attacker's description, to contact the rape incident room.

The victim is a white female who was wearing a white top, short white skirt and knee-high black boots.

The rapist is white, in his early 20s, about 5ft 8ins to 5ft 9ins tall, of plump build, with short spiky brown hair. He was wearing a blue shirt, dark trousers and was clean-shaven.

Anyone with information, or who was in the area of the railway station, should contact the rape incident room on 01473 613999 or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

The Evening Star has boosted the hunt for the rapist with the offer of a £1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the attacker.

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