Oxford Police Investigate Reported Sexual Assault

Police in Oxford, Mississippi are going by the book to investigate a report of a sexual assault right on the town square. It’s got everyone in town talking, especially women.

(Oxford, MS 4/1/2009) Police in Oxford, Mississippi are going by the book to investigate a report of a sexual assault right on the town square.

It’s got everyone in town talking, especially women.

The attack happened less than a mile from the Ole Miss campus and tonight investigators say they’re looking for anyone that can supplement the information given by the victim.

The 21 year old Ole Miss student says it happened last Thursday night. She says she got separated from friends in the Oxford square area when a tall, athletic man grabbed her and dragged her into a nearby alley, and forced her to have sex.

The report alone was enough to worry Chelsea Hadley who works on the square. I’m pretty shocked, because I consider Oxford a pretty safe place to live.” said the Junior from Byhalia.

And police say in general that’s been very true. This is a very rare event. “I can’t remember the last time we had anything like this on the square.” said Police Chief MIke Martin.

Martin says Baptist Hospital first notified police about the incident the next day. He says detectives need witnesses to help fill in what the victim couldn’t. “We have a little more information than we’re putting out. The reason why we’re keeping some of that information back is we’re looking for credible witnesses.””

And he believes there must be plenty of them out there.

Chief Martin says there are usually hundreds of people roaming the square in Oxford on any given Thursday night, and several dozen police officers. He says somebody, somewhere, should have seen something.

The woman showed up at a bar after the attack and before going to the hospital.

Chief Martin says it should serve as a warning, to people, especially woman, that they can never be too safe. “You feel safe here?” “Yeah, I do.” “You feel maybe too safe here?” “Maybe.” “What you gonna do from now on?” “Stick with him, definitely.” said freshman Ciara Frizzell of Dallas, TX.

And police say traveling with another person or group is perhaps the best protection, that and keeping your eyes open and guard up. “I would say just watch your back more. Especially if you’re a woman. Every woman has to.” explained Hadley.

Detectives say it will be difficult to develop a suspect without witness who may have seen anything unusual last Thursday night. Anyone with information should call the Oxford Police Department at 662-232-2400

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