Beeston rape victim’s life was saved by her hijab, say police

The extra layers of material cushioned the blows to her head

A Leeds rape victim who was beaten with a rock escaped death because she was wearing a hijab. 

The 18-year-old victim was hit in the head 18 times in the brutal attack, fracturing her skull, before being raped and left for dead.

Now detectives hunting the evil rapist have revealed his victim was saved from certain death by the hijab and hood protecting her head from the blows.

The teenager had been grabbed by her attacker while she waited at a bus
stop in the Beeston area of Leeds, before being dragged into an adjacent garden where the man committed his unspeakable attack.

Releasing the latest footage today, detectives said they were more anxious
than ever to catch the sick perpetrator, and revealed his victim was saved from certain death by the hijab and hood protecting her head from the blows of
the rapist’s rock.

Detective Superintendent Nick Wallen, from West Yorkshire Police, said
today: “I am certain we would be dealing with a murder investigation had the victim not been wearing her hijab and hood.

“The extra layers of material cushioned the blow, otherwise she would have
definitely been killed.”

The new CCTV is from earlier on in the evening of the rape in March at 9pm, before the suspect was chillingly caught on camera stalking THREE other women in Leeds.

The footage shows him walking towards the city centre from one of the
student areas and cross the road.

While stood in the central reservation, he can be seen bending down,
potentially to pick something up.

Det Supt Wallen said: “We need to know what that it, but it could have been
the rock he later used to attack the victim.”

The detective added that the rapist has not been linked to any offences in
the city whatsoever, and that his DNA has not yet proved a match for any on the UK or European database.

“The level of violence used is unprecedented and savage, which leads us to
think this is not his first crime.

“But this man remains invisible and extremely dangerous. He needs to be
caught straight away.

“Women, and young women in particular, just need to take extra precaution.”

He added that the suspect’s ethnicity is thought to be Eastern European,
Asian or Middle Eastern, and is not thought to own a car due to being seen in
areas on different sides of the city centre that night.

Det Supt Wallen added: “What we are asking people to consider is where
would someone who had those particular characteristics find somewhere to stay?

“We want to know what his links with these areas of the city are.

“He could be an immigrant in this country either here legally or illegally.

“Maybe he was here for one night and one night only.

“It is also possible he has seen this appeal and moved away. He has
committed this horrific offence yet we have no record of his DNA, you just don’t do something like this as a first offence.”

Anyone with any information about events that happened in the lead up to
the attack on March 6 is urged to contact West Yorkshire Police or call
Crimestoppers anonymously.