Detectives investigating a rape in a Bristol park are renewing their appeal for information 12 months on, with the victim bravely speaking out about his “appalling” ordeal.
The victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, revealed that he had only been living in Bristol for a few weeks when he was attacked. He was walking in Broadmead on Saturday October 16, 2021, between 6.10am and 7am, when he got talking to an unknown man.
Police say the man subsequently attacked and raped him in Castle Park, close to the church. One year on, officers are re-releasing CCTV footage of a man they want to identify as part of their enquiries. He was wearing a dark jacket, tracksuit bottoms and white hat.
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In a statement released via police today, the victim said: “A year ago today, I was attacked and raped in Castle Park, having only moved to the city a few weeks prior.
“It’s impossible to put into words the effect this attack had on me and I still struggle to come to terms with what happened to this day. I never want to see something like this happen to somebody else.
“Everyone has the right to feel safe. If anyone has any information at all, please come forward.”
CCTV enquiries, media appeals, proactive patrols and more have been carried out since the incident in an attempt to track down the man responsible. Three men have been arrested as part of Avon and Somerset Police’s enquiries to date. Two remain released under investigation, while the third has been excluded from the investigation, police say.
The suspect is described as Black or mixed race, about 5ft 8-10 ins, in his 20s or 30s, and slim. He is said to have spoken in a deep voice.
Senior Investigating Officer Detective Inspector Andrew Branch said: “This was an appalling crime and we are focussed on trying to identify the perpetrator so we can get the victim the justice he deserves.
“A lot of work has gone on over the past year, including a number of arrests, to do just that. Although we continue to keep an open mind, at this time we believe was an isolated incident and it has not been linked to any other crime.
“We remain hopeful there is someone out there who will be able to provide us with the vital piece of information we need in this investigation.
“It may be someone who at the time thought that detail was irrelevant, or it may be someone who didn’t feel comfortable coming forward last year. Whatever the reason, I would make a direct plea to anyone who may be able to help, to please call us, or Crimestoppers anonymously.”
DI Branch continued: “From the day it was reported to us we have sought to provide the victim with access to any support services he requires and will continue to do so.
“He has shown an incredible amount of courage throughout this police investigation and we are determined to do all we can to find the offender.”
Witnesses or anyone who thinks they can help to identify the man seen on CCTV is asked to call 101 and give reference number 5221242253. Alternatively, Crimestoppers take reports anonymously on 0800 555111 and via their website.
Help and support
If you have been the victim of a sexual crime there are services that can help you:
Reporting a sexual offence to police
If the rape or sexual assault has occurred recently, you should contact police dialling 999, so they can deal with it as urgently and effectively as possible.
If you have been the victim of a sexual crime, or if you know of a family member or friend who has, police would prefer to speak to you:
However, if contacting us online is the safest way for you to get in touch, you can fill in the Report a crime or incident form.
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