Police call for ‘key’ witnesses as detectives continue to investigate reported early-hours rape of a man in Exeter city centre

Detectives investigating a reported early-hours rape of a man in Exeter at the end of March are keen to trace ‘key witnesses’ described as a woman seen wearing bunny ears, two couples and a group of three people.

A 20-year-old man from the Exeter area was arrested on suspicion of rape. He has been released on police bail until April 18, pending further enquiries.

The incident is reported to have taken place sometime between 4am and 5.15am on Tuesday, March 29, in the grounds surrounding St Sidwell’s Church, in Exeter city centre.

Officers investigating the rape allegation want to speak to two couples seen in the early hours of the morning in the New North Road and Sidwell Street areas, and a group of three standing outside Next, in the High Street.

Detectives said the first couple, a man and woman, were walking from the direction of Exeter prison towards the clock tower, in New North Road, at around 2.45am and 3pm, when they were approached by a man near the bus stop opposite the Clock Tower Hotel.

Police are keen to trace another couple – one thought to be a woman wearing bunny ears – who at around 4am walked through St Sidwell’s churchyard from the Sidwell Street entrance, towards King William Street.

And a group of three people who were standing outside Next, in the High Street, at around 5am, are urged to get in touch.

Detectives believe the ‘key’ witnesses can help with police enquiries into the ongoing investigation.

Officer in charge DC Caroline Robertson said police want to hear from anyone else who was in the area in the early hours of the morning of March 29.

DC Robertson said: “The first couple, believed to be a male and a female, were walking from the direction of Exeter prison towards the Clock Tower on New North Road at around 2.45am to 3am.

“They were approached by a man near to the bus stop directly opposite the Clock Tower hotel. We would very much like to identify these people as they may be able to assist in our enquiries.

“The second couple we wish to speak to walked through St Sidwell’s churchyard from the Sidwell Street entrance exiting the churchyard towards King William Street at around 4am. We believe the female was wearing bunny ears.

“Lastly, a group of three people were outside the Next store on Exeter High Street at around 5am. Was this you? If so, please get in touch.”

DC Robertson added: “There wouldn’t have been much foot traffic at the time of the morning, so we are asking anyone who was on foot in that area around that time to make contact with us.”

  • Anyone with any information to help police is asked to email 101@dc.police.uk quoting crime reference CR/026317/22. Or call Crimestoppers, anonymously, on freephone 0800 555111.

Man, 20, is arrested on suspicion of the rape of a male in Exeter city centre as police appeal for information

 

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