Rape reported in the River Market

Rape reported in the River Market

Police are investigating an alleged rape that occurred in the River Market early Saturday morning.
LITTLE ROCK, AR – Police are investigating an alleged rape that occurred in the River Market early Saturday morning.

According to the report, the victim told police she met her attacker at Willy D’s Rock ‘n Roll Piano Bar. The two went outside to his car where the victim says the attack happened.

Afterward the victim and her sister reported the incident to a police officer working in the area.

Sgt. Cassandra Davis with the Little Rock Police Department says this isn't the first crime that has happened in the area in the past 3 weeks. "We've had a couple robberies or car-jackings where individuals were leaving different restaurants or businesses in the River Market and their cars were stolen."

But Sgt. Davis says crime is not a problem exclusive to the area. "The River Market District is safe. Crime occurs in the River Market just like it does anywhere else in the city."

Josh Quattlebaum works in the River Market and says he and his fellow employees make sure to walk in groups to avoid becoming a crime statistic. "It shakes you up that it's out there. It kind of makes you have an uneasy feeling when you're walking by yourself."

Marianna Lockard likes to come down to the River Market as much as possible and says she never feels uncomfortable. "I think if you look at the broader picture crime happens in every neighborhood."

Sgt. Davis says crime shouldn't stop anyone from patronizing the River Market District. "Enjoy the restaurants, the shopping, mingling, and socializing. We ask you just always be on your guard because there are people out there who want to take advantage of the situation."

Police are checking out surveillance video from Willy D's Saturday night to get a better look at the rape suspect. The victim says her attacker only identified himself as Shawn. The police report says he is 28-years-old, 6’0” tall and 170 pounds. He was wearing a tan shirt, blue jeans, black boots, and a red hat.

Police do have extra presence in the River Market District, particularly at night when the bars let out.

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