Avon and Somerset Police say they are investigating reports of a serious sexual assault in the Bradley Stoke area on Saturday night, 6th June.
The incident happened at about 11.45pm when a 22-year-old woman, who was on her way home from a night out, was attacked in an area of the Three Brooks Local Nature Reserve described by police as being “between the underpass and Three Lakes, near to The Bluebells road”.
The area was cordoned off to allow crime scene investigators to carry out an examination of the scene.
Police say their enquiries are continuing and they are keen to hear from anyone who may have been in the area on Saturday night around the time of the incident. If you are able to help, please call the North East Investigations department on the force number 101, quoting reference 59726/15.
The police search operation on Sunday morning affected the annual Bradley Stoke 10k Run, which started at 9.30am from the Jubilee Centre. The race, which normally passes through the cordoned-off area in the nature reserve, had to be diverted through Diana Gardens and Snowberry Close.
A section of the footpath running parallel to Stoke Brook, where it passes under the Bradley Stoke Way bridge, remained cordoned off at midday on Sunday and police officers were seen searching the verges at the side of the path and going through the contents of litter bins (photo above).
Later on Sunday, the search switched to the path leading down into the nature reserve from The Bluebells, where a team of eight police officers were seen searching undergrowth and woodland.
All paths in the area had been re-opened to the public by 8am on Monday.
Photos: Police search operation in the nature reserve on Sunday.
UPDATE (9th June): Police have issued a description of the offender:
“We are issuing a description of a man we would like to trace in connection with a serious sexual assault on a 22-year-old woman in the Bradley Stoke area on Saturday night, 6th June.”
“He is white, possibly in his mid-30s, about 6ft 1ins tall, well-built with broad shoulders. He was wearing a grey hooded top with a central zip. The hood had white strings that were frayed at the ends. His shoes were dark, with laces and high-cut up to the ankles, with thick soles of a different shade.”
“Police enquiries are continuing and officers will be stepping up patrols in the area to provide community reassurance.”
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