At 2:52 a.m. today Boston University Police requested State Police respond to Commonwealth Avenue at Deerfield Street, where a man reported to a BU officer that he believed a woman had been sexually assaulted on the Esplanade earlier in the night. All patrols from the State Police Barracks at Leverett Circle in Boston responded.
The man told troopers that he came across a woman in the general area of Massachusetts Avenue who told him she had been sexually assaulted on the Esplanade and thrown into the Charles River. The woman, later identified as a 20-year-old student at a local college, was no longer with the man when troopers arrived, but the man still had her purse; troopers used its contents to obtain her current address.
Troopers from the Boston barracks went to the woman’s home. She declined medical attention and did not provide a description of the assailant. Troopers requested that the State Police Detective Unit attached to the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office also respond.
The investigation is ongoing. Please note that neither the State Police nor the Suffolk District Attorney identify victims of sexual assault.
The Massachusetts State Police and the office of Suffolk District Attorney Daniel F. Conley urge anyone using public areas such as the Esplanade, especially at night, to be vigilant, to travel with friends if possible, stay in well-lit areas, avoid one-on-one contact with strangers, and not accept rides from strangers. Anyone out in these areas is urged to carry a cell phone and should call 911 to immediately be connected to State Police if they are in trouble or feel threatened.
This morning’s reported assault occurs as multiple agencies, including the State Police, Boston Police, and the Suffolk District Attorney, continue to investigate four sexual assaults in recent years — three that occurred in the vicinity of the Esplanade and one that occurred in South Boston — that are connected to each other. The victims in those cases collectively described their assailants as being a clean-shaven African-American male in his mid-20s to mid-30s, standing 5’8” to 5’10”. At the time of the attacks, he had a medium to large build and a bald head.
Investigators have not yet determined whether the incident reported this morning is linked to the previous assaults.