Haggerston and Dalston sex attacks spark police warning to weekend partygoers
PUBLISHED: 19:51 12 May 2017 | UPDATED: 20:01 12 May 2017
Police this evening urged partygoers in Dalston and Haggerston to take extra care after two attempted sex attacks in two days.
A 36-year-old was pinned to the ground in Scriven Street in the early hours of Wednesday morning, but her attacker ran off after a car drove past. And a 35-year-old was attacked early this morning in Hertford Road in the same way, before a taxi driver stopped and scared off her assailant. Police believe both women were targeted by the same man.
The first had been out in Dalston and was walking home via Middleton Road and Haggerston Road when she was grabbed from behind in Scriven Street. A Met spokesman said: “Thinking she was being robbed, she thrust her phone in the direction of the man but he ignored this and continued to pin her down. A passing car disturbed the man and he fled on foot in the direction of Haggerston Road. The victim ran home and called police.”
Then this morning at about 12.30am, the second woman “noticed a man on the opposite side of the road, walking 20 metres behind her”.
Scotland Yard said: “She kept walking but the man ran at her and pulled her to the ground. The victim screamed and drew the attention of a passing taxi driver who came to her aid. The suspect fled on foot towards Downham Road.”
The attacker in both cases was described as a black man in his early 20s, who was between 5ft 6ins and 5ft 10ins. In the first attack in Scriven Street he was wearing a dark green Adidas hood top with dark trousers and trainers.
Det Insp Paul Ridley said: “I am linking these two attacks based on locality, victim profile and the suspect description given by both victims.
“In both instances, the suspect targeted two lone women late at night, waiting until there were no witnesses before striking. He only made off when interrupted by passing motorists. I am convinced the same attacker is responsible for both incidents.
“While neither woman was sexually assaulted, I am treating these attacks as sexually motivated. The assailant had ample opportunity to steal property from both women.
“However, no words were used or demands made.
“I would ask anyone who is out tonight and over the weekend in the Dalston area to remain vigilant and if you see anyone suspicious then contact police immediately.
“Please be aware of your surroundings and stay alert. If you wear headphones you are putting yourself in a more vulnerable position.
“If there have been any other victims who have yet to contact police I would strongly encourage them to do so. Also, if you know the identity of the man responsible please contact police as we need to urgently track him down.”
Anyone with information is urged to call 101 and ask for Hackney Police, or ring Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.