Officers step up presence near U of M following sexual assault

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Police are responding to a sexual assault near the University of Minnesota campus over the weekend by stepping up patrols in the area, WCCO-TV reports.

Officials said a 19-year-old woman was raped Sunday morning between 2 -3 a.m. about a quarter mile from campus near 15th and Brooke avenues.

The woman told police that she was walking home alone after a party when she was approached by three men. Police said two of the men held the woman while the other raped her.

According to the Pioneer Press, the woman described the suspect as a man of an unknown race between 30-38 years old, and between 5 feet 8 inches and 6 feet in height. She also said the suspect had a light build, and was wearing a dark jacket, a dark shirt, jeans and work boots.

In the aftermath of the assault, U of M police said they are seeing an increase in requests for escorts, and noted that the service is available for anywhere on campus.

A university official also said the campus offers the Gopher Chauffeur service, which offers rides to students from bars and restaurants near campus on Friday and Saturday nights.

If a person does decide to walk, the official suggests that they be accompanied by other people because strength in numbers is the best defense.

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