Woman raped in St Leonards after night out

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A woman was raped while walking home from a night out in the early hours of Sunday morning (April 24), police said.

Detectives are investigating the rape, which happened in St Leonards shortly after 2am.

A spokesperson for Sussex Police said the woman was walking home along a pavement between London Road and St Margaret’s Road, having been out for the evening with friends in Hastings.

She was grabbed from behind by a man who raped her, after which she ran off towards London Road, and the man did not appear to follow her, the spokesperson added.

She made her way home and the crime was reported to the police later that day.

Nothing was stolen, police added.

Detective inspector Hannah Willard said: “The suspect is described as about 5’9”, with brown tanned skin, and had a beard. He was wearing a black hoody and a scarf.

“This was an horrific experience for the young woman, who is badly shocked. She is receiving support and expert counselling.

“If you were out and about in St Leonards in the early hours of Sunday, and saw what happened, or saw either the woman or the suspect, near Warrior Square, we do need to hear from you.

“Please contact us via 101@sussex.pnn.police.uk or call 101, quoting Operation Platinum.

“There is no recent record of attacks like this in the area, but we want to find this man before he tries to carry out anything similar.”

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