Police hope DNA sample will lead to sex attacker

DS Mark Petrie in front of the changing rooms in Sighthill Park
DS Mark Petrie in front of the changing rooms in Sighthill Park
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DETECTIVES investigating a serious sexual assault on a teenage girl are awaiting the results of DNA tests after a forensic sample belonging to the suspect was recovered.

The sample is set to be checked against the national database of convicted criminals as the hunt continues for a man who launched the sickening attack against the 16-year-old.

The victim had been waiting at a bus stop on Broomhouse Road when she was grabbed from behind by the man who demanded, “come with me”, before dragging her behind a blue changing pavilion on the edge of Sighthill Park.

The teenager was too terrified to put up a struggle during the sex attack, but managed to jump on a bus after returning to the main road and went to her parents’ house, where police were alerted.

Detectives are checking lists of known sex offenders in an effort to identify potential suspects following the incident, which took place at around 9.10pm on Tuesday.

Detective Sergeant Mark Petrie, from the force’s Amethyst team, which investigates sex crimes, said: “The victim was listening to music as she waited for the bus. She was approached out of her eye-line so she didn’t see what direction he came from. He was a total stranger she had never seen before.

“He grabbed her by the arm and said, ‘Come with me’. She was pulled to the back of the pavilion and thrown on the ground next to some concrete steps. She didn’t put up a struggle because she was fearful of what might happen if she did.

“After the attack, the victim managed to get on a bus. She went to her parents’ house, told them what happened and police were informed.

“The victim has been through a traumatic experience and she is being comforted by her family.”

In the hours after the attack, the teenager was taken to the specialist Amethyst facility to be interviewed and examined by a forensic physician.

DS Petrie said that a forensic sample had been recovered and had been sent away for testing as a “high priority” to get any results as quickly as possible. DNA from the sample will then be checked against the criminal record database.

The victim, who is working in a job after leaving school, has been interviewed twice so far by police.

The suspect is described as being white, of skinny build, in his early 30s, and was wearing a dark jacket and dark jeans. He was also carrying a white carrier bag with red beer cans in it.

DS Petrie added: “From the bag he was carrying, it seems likely that the suspect had visited a licensed premises. One of first tasks in this inquiry was visiting licensed premises in the area to check CCTV and ask if staff recognised this man. We are also checking CCTV cameras in the area.

“This is an area which is popular with dog walkers, joggers and other people in the community. We’re hopeful that people may have been in the area at the time and we would appeal for them to come forward.”

DS Petrie said the attack was not being linked to any other incidents at this time.