May 13, 2008
Arcata - The Humboldt State University Police Department released today a composite sketch of a male suspect in connection with an acquaintance rape that reportedly occurred in an outdoor area between Sunset Hall and the Jolly Giant Commons at about 3:00 a.m. Sunday, May 11, 2008.
UPD’s Crime Alert seeks information from anyone who might have seen or heard anything unusual in that location on Sunday morning, and any information regarding the identity and whereabouts of the man depicted in the sketch.
The alleged suspect is described as a slender white male in his early 20’s with brown “dreadlock” hair to his shoulders and baggy clothing, about 5’9” tall, weighing about 150-160 pounds.
The survivor, who did not suffer serious physical injury, first reported the incident to authorities on Monday afternoon. She said she saw the suspect at an off-campus party on Saturday evening, and encountered him again at the gazebo between Sunset and Redwood Halls early on Sunday. There, the man approached her and engaged her in conversation. They continued talking as they walked toward Jolly Giant Commons.
UPD Chief Thomas Dewey recounted, “The survivor had had some past off-campus social interaction with the alleged perpetrator, but she does not know much about him, where he lives, or if he is a student or not.”
She described to UPD investigators acts of sexual assault perpetrated against her will in the outdoor area between Sunset Hall and the Jolly Giant Commons. No weapons were reported involved.
University Police is actively pursuing the case. Late Monday and into Tuesday morning, UPD staff worked overtime investigating a particular person of interest, but by mid-day Tuesday, investigators and the survivor were unable to determine conclusively if this individual was in fact the perpetrator.
“Once we had run out that lead as far as we could, we released the Crime Alert,” Chief Dewey said. “We try to get public information out as soon as we can, without jeopardizing the viability of the investigation. We found the person of interest, interviewed him, and we are continuing to work the case. What we need now is a tip about this man’s identity or a witness statement from the public about what happened up there at 3:00 a.m. Sunday.”
The survivor has been connected with a variety of support services including on-campus Health and Counseling and the North Coast Rape Crisis Team.
Paper copies of the Crime Alert have been posted around campus and anyone with information about the case is asked to contact University Police at 826-5555 or to email the UPD at firstname.lastname@example.org.