NEWS

UBC campus plagued by recent strings of sexual attacks

10/15/2013 05:04 EDT | Updated 12/15/2013 05:12 EST
Police are warning women at the University of British Columbia after a handful of disturbing sexually-motivated attacks.

The most recent reported incident took place Sunday morning at 3:30 a.m. PT in a residential area, when a man came out from under a stairwell within an apartment building in the 2700 block of Fairview Ave. and accosted a 20-year-old woman.

She told police he started trying to take her clothes off and tried putting a hand up her skirt but she struggled free and screamed, and he ran away.

At the end of September, at 2:45 a.m. PT on a Saturday, a 19-year-old woman was attacked by a man who also tried to grope her under her skirt. She was walking alone in the 6300 block of Biological Sciences Rd. when the man came up behind her and tried to pick her up and pull her into a garden area. When she broke free and screamed, he fled on foot.

Last spring, police warned the campus community about two nighttime groping incidents in April and May in which a male suspect, on two occasions, reached up under the skirts of a 20-year-old woman and a 36-year-old woman, grabbed their buttocks, and then ran off.

And in April, an 18-year-old student was grabbed and thrown to the ground near Pacific Spirit Park's Trail 3 while she was out jogging at around 6:30 p.m. PT. She was not sexually assaulted or robbed, police say, but the motive for the attack remains unclear.

Police say there are some similarities between the two most recent two attacks, but can't say for certain whether they are connected to the attacks and assaults that happened on or near campus earlier this year.

In 2010, police issued warnings to women not to walk alone at night if possible after a string of gropings on campus.

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