Police hunt Burnley sex attacker

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POLICE are appealing for information after a 30-year-old woman was sexually assaulted in Burnley on Saturday night.

The offence took place around 7-30 p.m.. The victim left an address in Wilton Street and was walking towards Salus Street when she was approached by a man who appeared to have been watching her.

The man stepped out of a back yard and grabbed the victim’s arm before pushing her against the wall of the alleyway and sexually assaulting her.

The victim managed to call police at which point the offender ran off towards Briercliffe Road.

The offender is described as an Asian man, aged between 30 and 40 and between 5ft 11in. and 6ft tall. He is of large build with a very flat nose and spoke with a local accent.

A few hours later, around 1 a.m. another woman reported being approached by a man in nearby Hillingden Road, Burnley, and police are investigating the possibility the two incidents could be linked.

The woman says she was followed by an Asian man who asked her where she lived. She told him she was ringing the police at which point he walked off.

This man is described as around 5ft 7in. tall, of medium build and aged in his early 30s. He had short dark hair with a parting to the side, slightly slipped back and raised at the front. He was clean shaven and spoke with a local accent. He was wearing bright baggy trousers and a tunic which came to his knees. He also was wearing a black jacket.

DC Neil Scholes from Pennine CID said: “I would like to reassure people that incidents of this nature are rare and a full investigation is underway with uniformed officers in the area offering reassurance.

“I would appeal to anybody in the Wilton Street or Salus Street area of Burnley around 7-30 p.m. on Saturday that saw a man acting suspiciously, or believes they may have witnessed the incident itself, to come forward.”

Anyone with information about either incident should call Lancashire Police on 101.

People with information can also contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or on-line at Crimestoppers-uk.org. No personal details are taken, information is not traced or recorded and you will not go to court.