A BOY aged 16 spent the day in police custody after he was arrested on suspicion of a sex attack on a Japanese tourist in Sheffield.
The teenager was arrested yesterday morning and questioned throughout the day over the attack on an 18-year-old Japanese woman visiting the city last Friday.
She had been mugged and was chasing the culprit responsible for snatching her handbag when she caught up with him in woodland in the Ponderosa Park, Netherthorpe.
The woman was then dragged to an area a few yards away from a children’s playground, where she was subjected to a terrifying sexual assault
Police said the ordeal had left the victim ‘traumatised and upset’.
Extra police patrols were ordered in the wake of the attack, which are continuing today to try to restore calm in the area.
Detective Chief Inspector Bob Chapman, who is overseeing the police probe into the attack, stressed serious sexual assaults committed in the city remain rare.
Mr Chapman said: “The community quite rightly was very concerned about this and the police shared that concern and as a result stepped in and acted very quickly to investigate this to try to identify the person responsible.
“We also acted quickly in terms of reassuring the community and ordered extra patrols, which are continuing.
“This kind of offence is an extremely rare occurrence in Sheffield and something that the police, thankfully, do not have to deal with on a regular basis.
“It is something that we always take extremely seriously and act extremely quickly with in order to identify a suspect.
“The victim in this case was traumatised and upset about it obviously and South Yorkshire Police are working to support her through this.”
The woman had been mugged on the corner of Hammond Street and Bellefield Street, Netherthorpe, when she chased after the offender and ended up in Ponderosa Park a few minutes before she was attacked.
Officers sealed off the park and scenes of crime experts combed it for forensic evidence to help them catch the culprit.
They also carried out extensive door-to-door enquiries in the area and appealed to members of the community to come forward with information to help them trace the offender.
Anyone with information about the mugging or attack is asked to call South Yorkshire Police on 101, quoting incident number 1,029 of Friday, August 24.