COLUMBIA — A woman told police she was raped about 2 or 3 a.m. Nov. 1 or 2 in the 3600 block of Aspen Heights Parkway, according to a news release from Columbia police.
The first police report of the assault was Monday, when the victim went to University Hospital's emergency room.
A police investigation found that the 19-year-old woman was walking in the Aspen Heights parking lot when a man she didn't know chased her, pushed her into the grass and raped her, according to the release.
Police had few details about the attacker’s physical appearance. He fled on foot after the assault.
Missouri statute defines first-degree rape, or forcible rape, as sexual intercourse with a person who is incapacitated or incapable of giving consent, or "by the use of forcible compulsion." Second-degree rape is defined as sexual intercourse without the other party's consent.
The rate of reported forcible rapes is up this year in Boone County, and the Missourian reported in October that the number of forcible rapes is at a five-year high. Statistics of rape and sexual assault can be misleading because many victims do not report incidents to authorities. The Columbia Police Department and advocacy groups have been working to encourage more victims to come forward, department spokeswoman Latisha Stroer said in the previous article.
Police ask that anyone with information contacts CPD or Crime Stoppers at 573-875-TIPS.
Supervising editor is Stephanie Ebbs.