All of the details released by police about Sunderland rape a week on from terrifying crime as police thank public for help

A masked man raped a woman during a random attack in Newbottle – here’s what we know so far as detectives continue to appeal for anyone with information to come forward.

Tuesday, 4th August 2020, 4:17 pm

An investigation was launched after a woman was raped at her Newbottle home in an ‘appalling’ attack which occurred between 10.30pm and 10.40pm on Monday, July 27.

What did the attacker look like?

Detectives say the attacker is a white male, who was unknown to the victim, wearing a dark face mask and dark hoodie.

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An investigation into the rape report is ongoing.

He is believed to have fled the scene immediately after the sexual assault although police have not yet confirmed if this was on foot or in a vehicle.

Do police fear the offender could strike again?

Detectives say they are treating the rape report as a random attack and say the offender was not known to the victim.

However, Northumbria Police has confirmed there have been no similar reports made in the area nor is there any evidence to suggest the offender will strike again.

Speaking to the Echo last week, Detective Chief Inspector Louise Cass-William, who is leading the investigation, said: “I understand there is concern but I do need to stress that we are not asking anyone to change their routines at this point.

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"There is no information that would suggest there will be another attack of this nature, and there is no information to suggest there is any previous incident that we would link it to either.

Has anyone been arrested?

One week on from the attack, Northumbria Police has confirmed no one has been arrested although officers have questioned a 29-year-old man who is being treated as a person if interest.

DCI Cass-William said: "We have spoken to a 29-year-old male.

"We wish to expand our inquiries further and I am appealing to members of the local community to contact us if they have any information of any males in the area, between around 9.30pm and 10.40pm on the evening – as well as any other suspicious activity they would wish to report to police.”

Is the victim being supported?

The victim is being supported by specialist officers after immediately reporting the sexual assault to police following the attack on Monday, July 27.

Officers arrived on the scene within minutes of the call and a police presence has remained in the area over the past week as inquiries continue.

DCI Cass-William said: "The victim is being supported by specialist officers as well. It has been an appalling attack for her and of course we wish to give her the upmost support throughout this very difficult time and we will continue to do so."

What to do if you have any information?

Detectives are appealing for anyone with any information about any males in the area that evening or who have suspicions about any males to contact police on 101.

Northumbria Police has thanked all the people who have come forward and say no detail is too small.

"Members of the community may think that the information they have is insignificant and I can assure them it is not,” added the DCI, who has been with the force for more than 25 years.

"We wish to hear from them and let us establish what information they have so please so contact us.

"The most important thing is to ensure we identify this person and we bring that person to justice as swiftly as possible."

Anyone with information should call 101 quoting log 1205 27/07/20 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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