Sudbury attack: Raped woman 'thought she was going to die'

The grassland area where the assault took place
Image caption The attack happened on grassland between First Avenue and Second Avenue in Sudbury

The 18-year-old victim of a rape "thought she was going to die", police said.

The attack happened in an area of grassland between First Avenue and Second Avenue in Sudbury, Suffolk, on Monday at about 03:30 BST.

Police said the woman was walking back from the town centre when she was approached from behind and dragged on to the grass where she was raped.

Suffolk Police said it was a "really serious, brutal and terrifying" attack.

The force said it was doing everything it can to capture the "particularly violent" attacker.

Image caption Police are increasing their presence in the town

Det Supt Marina Ericson, head of the joint major investigation team, said the incident was disturbed by witnesses who heard the victim's screams.

She said: "This was a very terrifying ordeal for this young lady. It's a complete stranger attack and she was particularly vulnerable, on her own, when it happened.

"There was significant force used and I honestly believe she thought she was going to die as a result of this attack."

The victim is being supported by specialist trained officers.

Image caption Det Supt Marina Ericson described it as a "terrifying ordeal"

Police said there will be an increased presence over the weekend, and urged people, especially women, to take precautions for their own safety.

The offender is described as white but tanned in appearance, medium to small build with dark short curly hair and dark beard.

It is believed he spoke with a foreign accent and was wearing a dark leather jacket and jeans.

Detectives are appealing for anyone who was near First Avenue, Second Avenue or Waldingfield Road between 02:30 and 03:30 BST to contact them.

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