Updated: RNC revise number of recent sexual assaults to five

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The RNC told reporters this afternoon that two more women have come forward to report they have recently been sexually assaulted in downtown St. John's.

Police suspect the same attacker in all cases.

Reporters were also informed that police are working with the victims to get a better description of the suspect.

All the women were attacked late at night or early in the morning, while alone, in the downtown area of the city.

For the full story, see Tuesday's Telegram.


Previous story

The Royal Newfoundland Constabulary says it is considering the possibility that a sexual assault early Sunday morning in St. John’s may be linked to similar recent incidents.

A woman leaving a nightclub encountered a man and walked with him away from downtown St. John’s towards the centre city area before being sexually assaulted. Police said the events took place between 3 a.m. and 4 a.m.

The suspect is described as tall and 30-40 years of age, with a slim build and dark complexion. The description matches that of a person wanted by the RNC in connection with two other recent cases of assault against women.

Police are investigating the possibility that a Dec. 1 assault on Bonaventure Avenue may have been sexually motivated. The RNC is also investigating another incident in the same general area, but had not established a date as of last Friday.

Police are warning women walking alone at night in the downtown and centre city areas to take precautions, as they may be at increased risk of being sexually assaulted.

Anyone with information relating to these incidents is asked to contact the RNC by calling 729-8000 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477). Anonymous information can also be provided at www.nlcrimestoppers.com.

Organizations: Crime Stoppers

Geographic location: Bonaventure Avenue

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Recent comments

  • Dee
    December 10, 2012 - 20:44

    Some kind of a hair spray in your pocket or bear spray might be good to have especially anyone in a parking lot leaving their car at night also. Don't risk walking anywhere alone though.

  • wavy
    December 10, 2012 - 19:04

    Woah, check out the big brain on Kent. What else do you know about this person whom you've never met, Kent, or do you just go around psychoanalyzing complete strangers for kicks? Talk about feeling inadequate, not to mention insecure, grandiose and pretentious. I believe Jess was expressing her opinion which, is my understanding, is the point of these discussion boards. No need to jump down someone's throat to make yourself feel better, or adequate.

  • Donna
    December 10, 2012 - 17:40

    I WILL continue to walk at night. My precautions will include shoes to protect my feet from broken glass and gloves to protect my hands from frostbite. What other precautions did you have in mind? You know what makes me have a risk of being sexually assaulted? A vagina. This I have had since I was born. I cover that with pants AND underwear so I'm not sure what else I can do. A year after I was born I learned to walk and like most toddlers I was excited! I will continue to enjoy walking for as long as I have a vagina.

  • wavy
    December 10, 2012 - 17:01

    Why has there not been a sketch of the suspect released? Seems like it would be helpful. Surely someone got a good look at this guy. Yet, there still seems to be a lot the police aren't saying about these cases; surely it can't be because it will jeopardize the investigation or future charges. Was the suspect armed? Known to the victims? How does a woman walk away with a suspect? Was it knowingly or against her will? The public has a right to know these things.

  • Serial Rapeist onm Lose
    December 10, 2012 - 16:31

    call it for what it is: "RAPE". Calling it "sexual assault" seems to provide no justice to the victims. Rape is a much harsher word for a harsh act.

  • That they will
    December 10, 2012 - 16:30

    They have more man/woman power now than they did in the 70's. They'll get him. This place is not that big. Hopefully a better description will be provided to the public. And yes, if you're attacked, fight like a savage and get away quick and get help. It's better for him to turn himself in than wait for them to come get him and they will. That they will.

  • Kate
    December 10, 2012 - 16:29

    I always find comments like Kent's a little odd... you're blaming people being offended on their own inadequacy, yet you yourself appear to have been so offended by the contents of the comment you were replying to that you had to complain about it. Jess's comment hits the nail on the head -- if this man is caught, what will happen to him? A slap on the wrist. Look at the recent case of the young man who's had multiple convictions for sexually assaulting children, yet has only been given a few months of jail time. If we want to make the streets safe, we need harsher penalties for sexual predators, and we need to make sure that they are getting rehabilitation during their jail time. Otherwise, we're going to keep seeing these same people committing the same crimes over and over again, with the RNC giving its same bland, ineffective warning to women every time. If we want to prevent rape, we need to stop telling the victims what to do and start looking at what we can do to stop the rapists themselves.

  • Lynn
    December 10, 2012 - 10:55

    I would caution any woman considering carrying a weapon to think twice. It may sound like a sensible precaution, but take a moment to think it through. Any man who will sexually assault a woman will certainly have no compunction about taking that weapon away and using it against you. MOST women do not have the physical strength to be able to prevent this from happening. Same goes for self-defense training. In theory it's a good idea, but in reality? All too often it gives women a false sense of security. Once again MOST women are not physically capable of taking on an adult male - especially one who is quite willing to hurt you in the first place. Women can't rely on the old "kick him in the balls" idea either. That is not always effective and may in fact lead to you being injured far more severely. Better options - yell 'FIRE' as loud as you can, pee (on yourself or him), or (if you can) throw up on your attacker. It's much more of a deterrent than a weapon that can be easily taken away. The best defense is to avoid situations that put you at risk. No, it shouldn't be this way, but sadly that is the reality.

    • Michelle
      December 10, 2012 - 16:39

      Pee on him? Or on myself? I'm lost here. What would that accomplish?

  • Agree
    December 10, 2012 - 08:12

    Jess-- I totally agree. I am so sick of having to be afraid to walk the streets as a woman. Being afraid only gives power to these sick deviants. The penalties and public shaming for any man terrorizing or harming women and/or children should be severe with absolutely no tolerance! At the same time, maybe the RNC should be putting on self-defence lessons for women instead of telling them to watch out for weirdos! Back in the 60's, Mom used to carry a can of Carnation milk in her purse and a big hatpin in her pocket when walking alone at night. Whack him over the head, give him a good strong knee in the balls, jab him with something sharp. Stop being afraid, sisters. Lets take back the night!!!

  • Edmund
    December 09, 2012 - 20:02

    There were sexual assaults in the mid 70's in that area (Empire Ave. To Portugal Cove Road to Bonaventure Ave to Elizabeth Ave) and the cops never ever solved those attacks so what makes one think they will have any success in solving these attacks. The best advice to women walking alone is #1 don't do it and #2 is carry a weapon of some sort that can inflict serious damage to a sexual predator and use it to hurt the SOB. Advice to the RNC is if and when you catch this scumbag have a public whipping of his genitals and those who he offended go first. In situations like this public corporal punishment should be reinstated so the perverts will think twice before assaulting others. If the powers that be at The Telegram do not print these comments they do all of our residents a disservice and simply contribute to the problem.

  • Ummm
    December 09, 2012 - 17:23

    Why is this story only listed as the 4th story on the site? It should be in the top three with big headlines and the flashing photos. People's attention needs to b drwan to it so the physco can be caught.

  • Jess
    December 09, 2012 - 16:15

    Once again, local police are suggesting that victims take caution instead of adopting a zero tolerance policy for sexual assault. Target the perpetrators RNC, not the victims. We should be able to walk peacefully without being warned. Warn the perpetrators, not the victims.

    • Kent
      December 10, 2012 - 10:37

      What do you suggest the Police say? If they didn’t warn the public then people like you would accuse them of concealing information. They are not blaming the victims but merely trying to prevent further victims. The police cannot be everywhere at one time. The problem is that there are people like you who relish the thought of being offended by something so you can vent. This usually stems from some sort of inadequacy.

    • JK
      December 10, 2012 - 15:57

      So there's a RAPIST on the loose, and you're upset because the police are warning people to watch out for him? Seriously? THERE IS ALREADY A ZERO TOLERANCE POLICY. THEY JUST HAVEN'T CAUGHT THE GUY YET. If you think that warning people about a serial rapist is "targeting the victim", you need your head examined.