A potentially crucial witness is sought regarding a sexual assault investigation in Southampton.
In the early morning of Saturday 28th September, a woman was sexually assaulted in Hoglands Park – one of the central parks within the city centre opposite Debenhams.
Officers are attempting to trace a man, believed to have been with the victim outside The Edge nightclub at around 5am prior to the incident, who might be able to help with their case.
CCTV has caught the couple walking together down St Mary’s Road onto Trinity Road shortly afterwards.
The man is described as white, in his mid thirties and around 5ft 6ins tall. He had light brown hair which was short at the sides and longer on the top. He was also wearing a stripy or checkered shirt. The victim has told police the man had a distinctive gap between his two front teeth.
Detective Inspector David Nealon said:
“We are still working to piece together the circumstances around this incident and believe this man may be able to provide important information about the events leading up to the offence.”
“It is important to stress we are treating this man as a witness and not a suspect, and he has nothing to fear in coming forward and talking to us.”
The assault is believed to have taken place in Hoglands Park between 5 and 5.40am, and the victim has described the offender as black with a large, muscular build. He was wearing a yellow and black cap with yellow peak, grey hooded top and dark trousers. He had a piercing in his left ear half way up the cartilage and is described as having a round face. He has a deep voice and English accent.
Det Insp Nealon added:
“We understand that incidents like this can cause women to be concerned about their personal safety so we advise them to take the usual precautions with their safety that we always recommend.”
“If you go out at night always try to take a licensed taxi to get home. If you have to walk home then walk with friends and stick to busy, well lit areas.”
“Police have conducted extra patrols in the park to provide visible reassurance to the public, and we will continue to do so over the coming days.”
Anyone with any information about either the witness or the suspect should contact the Area Investigation Team at Southampton Central on 101 or call the anonymous Crimestoppers charity on 0800 555 111.