Uni sex attacker fears as another preys on travellers

Police have released a face-fit image and CCTV footage from the Parkville assault.
Police have released a face-fit image and CCTV footage from the Parkville assault.

Police are searching for a sex attacker who forced a woman into a garden bed in a terrifying ordeal last month.

Detectives have been told the woman, 21, was walking along Swanston Street about 3am on November 25, near the intersection with Grattan Street in Parkville, when a man she did not know approached her.

He walked alongside the woman but as they came to Masson Road in the Melbourne University campus, he forced her into a garden bed where he sexually assaulted her.

A police spokeswoman said the man then fled the area.

The attacker is described as being of Asian appearance, about 165 centimetres tall, with a medium build. He was wearing a grey hooded jumper and spoke with an Asian accent.

Police have released an image of a man they would like to speak with.

The attack occurred on the same day as the latest assault by a serial sex offender in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs.

Police believe the serial sex offender who has targeted eight women in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs since August will strike again if he is not caught.

Sexual crimes squad detectives will set up an information caravan and door-knock homes in the area of the latest attack, which occurred on Riversdale Road, Canterbury on November 25.

The offender is described as being of Asian appearance, aged in his 20s, with a slim build and about 178cms.

Detective Inspector Paul Binyon said police knew the public was becoming increasingly worried about the attacks, which usually occurred after lone women got off public transport.

On each occasion, the man approached his victims from behind and indecently assaulted them, before fleeing on foot.

‘‘His intent has left us with no doubts that [rape] was his aim,’’ Detective Inspector Binyon said.

‘‘He hasn’t spoken, which is peculiar in itself. It leads us to be concerned there may be an escalation in his offending.’’

In the latest incident, a 27-year-old Camberwell woman was walking east along Riversdale Road, Canterbury.

She was attacked after crossing Willow Grove just after 9pm.

The offender fled and was last seen heading west along Riversdale Road and right into Willow Grove, before continuing north.

The other attacks occurred at:

* Kanooka Avenue, Lower Templestowe - 6.35pm on August 3
* Bordeaux Street, Doncaster - 11.10pm on August 4
* Harrow Street, Box Hill – 11.40pm on August 4
* Hillcroft Avenue, Templestowe – 7.45pm on August 14
* Soderlund Drive, Doncaster – 7.25pm on August 22
* Tuxen Street, Balwyn North – 10.35pm on September 6
* Through Road, Camberwell – 8.30pm on November 3.

Anyone who witnessed any of the incidents or who recognises either of the men is asked to phone Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

This story Uni sex attacker fears as another preys on travellers first appeared on The Age.