Police appeal for witnesses after sexual assault in the Sugarhouse

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Police are looking for witnesses after an 18 year old woman was raped in the ladies toilets at The Sugarhouse at around 12.30am on Tuesday October 1st.

The woman, who is now receiving support from specialist officers, managed to fight off her attacker before running out of the toilets to raise the alarm.

Police have released CCTV images of a man they would like to speak to in connection with the incident.

Detective Superintendent Paul Withers said: “I have a dedicated team of detectives working on this case as we continue to try and find the person responsible.

“We are keen to speak with a man captured on CCTV inside The Sugarhouse. I appreciate it isn’t the best quality CCTV, but if anybody thinks they know who this person is then I would urge them to contact police. If you recall seeing this person on the night in question, perhaps you saw him on the dance floor, or more importantly making his way towards and enter the ladies’ toilets, then please come forward.”

Detective Superintendent Withers said the police were also keen to speak with a second year female student – believed to be studying law at Lancaster – who may have spoke with the victim in the ladies’ toilets around the time of the incident.

Detective Inspector Andy Hulme, from the Force Major Investigation Team, said: “There were around 1400 people at the club that night and we are appealing for anybody with any information about this incident to come forward. I specifically want to speak to any women who remember a man walking into the ladies’ toilets or who saw a man in there, or who heard any shouting. If any men were in the ladies’ loos for any accidental reason we would also like them to come forward so we can speak to them.”

The Detective Inspector went on to add that whilst he understood that “people may feel anxious and alarmed at this time” he wanted to reassure the student population that “sexual assaults of this nature were rare”.

In a statement on its website, LUSU said that it takes any form of sexual assault and harassment extremely seriously. “We believe that 100% of the responsibility for any acts of these nature lies solely with the perpetrator. It can never be justified, it can never be explained away and there is no context in which it is valid, understandable or acceptable. We are cooperating with Lancashire Police in their investigation.”

Anybody with any information is urged to contact police on 101 quoting log number 0028 of October 1st or Crimestoppers anonymously in 0800 555 111 or online at Crimestoppers-uk.org.

No personal details will be taken, nor is the information traced or recorded and you will not have to go to court.

Image courtesy of Lancashire Constabulary
Image courtesy of Lancashire Constabulary
Image courtesy of Lancashire Constabulary
Image courtesy of Lancashire Constabulary
Image courtesy of Lancashire Constabulary
Image courtesy of Lancashire Constabulary
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