Police investigating sexual assault | SteamboatToday.com

Police investigating sexual assault

Downtown Steamboat incident reported last week; few details

Zach Fridell

Steamboat Springs Police Department officers are investigating a sexual assault reported in downtown Steamboat Springs last week.

The assault was first reported to police at about 1 a.m. Oct. 21. Police are releasing few details about the alleged incident.

“It was a sexual assault that occurred outside to a female that was walking home and it’s under investigation,” Capt. Joel Rae said Wednesday. “We’re really not releasing any other details at this time so we don’t compromise any aspect of this investigation.”

The incident is thought to have occurred near the intersection of 11th and Oak streets. Police have not released any other details, including physical descriptions of the suspected assailant or assailants, or the nature of the assault.

Two other sexual assaults were reported in previous weeks in Steamboat, but Rae said there is no indication the assaults are related.

Nonetheless, Rae reminded people to travel in groups of two or more, particularly at night.

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“It’s always best to travel in groups of people and, not to indicate that this was any type of roofies incident or rohypnol incident, but don’t take drinks from strangers,” he said. “Stay together with the people you know when you’re out and about.”

The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network provides the following advice to help women reduce their risk of being victims of sexual assault:

– Be aware of your surroundings. Knowing where you are and who is around you may help you to find a way to get out of a bad situation.

– Try to avoid isolated areas. It is more difficult to get help if no one is around.

– Walk with purpose. Even if you don’t know where you are going, act like you do.

– Trust your instincts. If a situation or location feels unsafe or uncomfortable, it probably isn’t the best place to be.

– Try not to load yourself down with packages or bags as this can make you appear more vulnerable.

– Make sure your cell phone is with you and charged and that you have cab money.

– Don’t allow yourself to be isolated with someone you don’t trust or someone you don’t know.

– Avoid putting music headphones in both ears so that you can be more aware of your surroundings, especially if you are walking alone.

For more information, visit http://www.rainn.org.

Anyone with information about this or any other suspected crime in Routt County is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 970-870-6226.