Lancashire police have released new information on the Sugarhouse sexual assault, which took place on Tuesday of Freshers’ Week, in a further appeal for witnesses to come forward. This new appeal, issued three weeks after the initial incident, includes new information – detailing the exact events and including a description of the attacker provided by the victim.
An email circulated to all members of the university states: “Around 12:30am on Tuesday 1st October (early hours of Monday night/Tuesday morning), the 18-year-old-student was confronted by a man as she left a toilet cubicle in The Sugarhouse [the official LUSU nightclub] and was pushed back inside where she was raped”. The woman has described her attacker as a white male, about 6 feet tall, with blonde hair and was aged between 18 and 30 years old. She told police that he was wearing “a light coloured short-sleeved top with no collar, but he may also have been wearing a long sleeved shirt or jacket and darker trousers”.
The Detective Chief Inspector has revealed that the offence was committed between approximately 12:30am and 12:45am, saying: “I want people to reflect on who they were out with that night…. Did anyone in your group leave you at that time and say they were going to the toilet? Did anyone matching the description leave the venue suddenly? Do you know of anyone who had sex in the club that night or have you heard anyone bragging? If anyone can help with these questions or has any information, I’d appeal [for] them to contact us”.
The message sent out to students also stated that officers are keen to speak to the man captured on this CCTV image, along with other potential witnesses – including a second year female student, believed to be studying Law at Lancaster University, who allegedly spoke to the victim moments before the attack.
Finally, Gilbert stated that “We are continuing to support the young woman who has suffered a particularly distressing ordeal and once again I would like to assure people that sexual assaults of this nature are rare”.
Anybody with information can contact the police on 101, quoting log number 0028 of 1 October, or can call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.