Police in Staffordshire are hunting for an “Asian” man who dragged a woman off the street in Hanley city centre and subjected her to a brutal rape.
The victim was grabbed as she walked along Bethesda Street in the early hours of Sunday morning and raped near the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery, reports the Stoke Sentinel.
The attack was only brought to a halt when bypassers heard her screams for help and rushed to the scene, causing the attacker to flee.
Police have issued a description of the “Asian” suspect, who is thought to stand around 5’5″ tall, with a slight build and short hair. He is said to have been wearing a light-coloured top when he launched his attack.
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Staffordshire Police Detective Inspector Steve Chadwick, who is the investigating officer for the case, issued an appeal “for information following a rape which took place in Hanley in the early hours of this morning.
“A woman was walking along Bethesda Street when she was grabbed and raped by a man.
“We have already spoken to witnesses who came to the woman’s aid, alerted by her calls for help.
“The area outside the Potteries Museum has been cordoned off throughout today while investigations continue.
“The victim is currently being attended by specially-trained officers and we are investigating the report with the sensitivity and care the circumstances require.
“At this stage our officers are still gathering information to establish what exactly has taken place and we would encourage any members of the public who have information they feel may be relevant, to contact us as soon as possible.”
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Police are keen to trace a man who was seen at the junction of Broad Street and Marsh Street South, who was wearing dark trousers and a dark t-shirt. He is not believed to be a suspect, but may be able to help with the investigation.
DI Chadwick asked anyone with information about the attack to call 101 quoting incident 138, August 13th.