Students targeted in violent South Parks attacks

Local News News

Last week there were two separate attacks in South Parks targeting two female students.

Paul Sullivan, University Marshall and Head of Security Services confirmed the attacks had targeted Oxford Brookes students.

Thames Valley Police released the following statement concerning the attack on Tuesday 24th: “The victim, a 25 year old student was walking along Headington Hill towards the bridge when a male walking in the opposite direction barged into her shoulder and kicked the victim in the stomach and twice in the face before making off.

The victim was taken to the JR and released after treatment.

The offender is described as a black male in his mid-twenties skinny build. He was wearing a grey tracksuit.”

The statement released following the attack on Monday 23rd reads: “On the Monday (23/04) at 01.15am Thames Valley Police received a report of a male running towards a lone female at the entrance to the university near to South Parks. The offender is described as a black male, about 5’8’ft tall wearing dark clothing.

Also on Monday (23/04) in Morell Avenue between 9.00pm and 9:15pm there were two reports of a suspicious male walking alongside people.

The male is described as tall and skinny wearing a balaclava and dark clothing.”

Brookes students have in the past drawn attention to issues affecting student safety in South Parks. Student Peter Hulley, 26, began his campaign for better lighting on what he viewed as dangerous dimly-lit pathways back in 2015 following the sexual assault of one female student.

His campaign was controversial however and made little headway with the Council stating: “Unfortunately, the council has no budget for lighting in parks, because they are only intended for day-time use. The additional cost of lighting the footpath would be prohibitive in the light of the Government’s cuts to council funding.

The Oxford Preservation Trust also has covenants on the land that restrict us from installing lighting.

Most importantly, there is a well-lit and safer alternative via Warneford Lane and Cheney Lane and members of the public are encouraged to use this after dark.”

The route along Cheney Lane had been criticised however since in inclement weather people are forced to walk on the road since the path there is unwalkable in rain.

Other members of the public protested against the lights saying that the light pollution that would be caused would be a huge detriment to one of the only peaceful parts of the city.