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Memorial Gardens, Crawley closed after rape on Saturday night

Police are searching for a suspect aged about 18.

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Police are investigating a report that a woman was raped in the Memorial Gardens, Crawley, in the early hours of Sunday (6 January).

Officers are still establishing the circumstances after the 30-year-old victim said she was sitting in the gardens with a man she had met there earlier.

He then took her into some bushes and raped her sometime between 1am and 2.25am before running off towards the Kingsgate car park. She is being supported by specially trained officers.

The suspect is described as aged about 18, white with black long scruffy hair down to his ears and a medium black beard. He was wearing a white hoody possibly North Face, blue jeans, white Nike trainers and a big gold watch.

Detective Sergeant Pauline Lane said:

“We are appealing for any witnesses who were in the Memorial Gardens on Saturday night or in the early hours of Sunday who may have any information about this incident to come forward.

The victim who also approached two men after she was attacked and told them what had happened. We also need to speak to these two men.

“There are police patrols in the area of Memorial Gardens and anyone with concerns should speak to them.”


If you have any information which could help the investigation, contact police online https://www.sussex.police.uk/contact/af/contact-us/ or ring 101 quoting serial 110 of 06/01.

You can report crime and incidents online at www.sussex.police.uk/reportonline

It is thought it will be unlikely that the gardens will be opened for some time.

A Sussex police spokesperson said:

“Officers remain at the scene pending a forensic examination being completed.

The victim is currently being supported by specialist officers.”

Crawley police took to twitter this morning to reassure the public of their safety and to explain the closure.

There have been no arrests at this time.

Crime

Betting shop robbed at knifepoint in Southgate, Crawley

Sussex Police are investigating a knife point robbery in Crawley and are appealing for witnesses to come forward.

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A man entered a betting shop in Southgate Parade, Crawley around 10.05am on Wednesday (June 5).

He threatened the staff worker and demanded money from the till before fleeing the scene.

Officers attended the premises and conducted an area search but the suspect was not found.

Sussex Police say that all lines of enquiry will be investigated.

Chief Inspector Rosie Ross said:

“All lines of enquiry connected to this incident will be investigated.

“Engagement with the communities is vital and we will continue to educate members of the public about the dangers and consequences of carrying a knife.

“Our message to those who carry a knife or thinking of carrying a knife is that it does not protect you and could actually make you more vulnerable and in danger of serious harm.”

Anyone with information is asked to report online or call 101 quoting 351 of 05/06.

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