Leeds & West Yorkshire

Leeds women warned Beeston rapist 'could strike again'

Beeston rape suspect Image copyright West Yorkshire Police
Image caption West Yorkshire Police say the man stalked three women before the attack in Beeston

The detective hunting a violent rapist who left a woman for dead fears the suspect could strike again.

An 18-year-old was dragged from a bus stop in Leeds and bludgeoned with a stone before being sexually assaulted.

It has now emerged three other women were stalked by the suspect prior to the attack on Beeston Road, on 6 March.

Det Supt Nick Wallen, of West Yorkshire Police, said the others had a "lucky escape" and warned women in the city to be on their guard.

He said: "My fear is that potentially he could strike again. We need to get him off the streets as soon as possible.

"I don't want to cause panic among the young women in Leeds but as rare as these incidents are, they do occur and you can do a lot to help yourselves and avoid becoming a victim."

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Media captionCCTV footage of a man wanted for the rape and attempted murder of a woman in Leeds has been released

Police say the first woman was followed from near TGI Fridays, on Kirkstall Road, towards the city centre, where she got on a bus to escape him.

He was then spotted on CCTV walking just inches behind a woman near Wellington Street. It is thought she walked into a bar, not realising she was being followed.

He then stalked a third woman from the city centre to Burley Road, where she hid in Tesco Express.

Detectives have released images and a description of the attacker.

"They had a lucky escape," said Det Supt Wallen. "This is a mile-and-a-half of concerted walking by the offender, following three different women absolutely with the intention, in my view, of attacking somebody.

"I would ask people to look at these images again. I think if you know him, you will know him from these images."

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