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Woman raped in Dewey Beach

Police: Victim was lured into outdoor shower on West Street
July 31, 2013

A young woman was raped in an outdoor shower on West Street after a night at the bar with her friends in Dewey Beach, police say.

Dewey Beach Police Sgt. Cliff Dempsey said a 21-year-old white woman spent the evening at a bar in town with friends. Two men the women did not know bought them multiple shots before the women left the bar, he said.

The victim, a resident of Garnet Valley, Pa., was separated from her friends after 1 a.m., July 27, Dempsey said. Her friends saw one of the men from the bar at a pizza shop where the friends stopped before heading home, he said.

He said the group of women called the victim’s cellphone in an attempt to find her. Dempsey said the victim answered and told her friends she was fine and was walking back to the house on Chicago Street, where they were staying. When the victim’s friends arrived at the house, she still was not there, Dempsey said.

A resident of West Street called police the same night to report a suspicious person knocking on their door. Police responded to West Street, found the victim in the front lawn and drove her to the house on Chicago Street.

“The next day, we were told to respond to Beebe Hospital,” Dempsey said. He said the victim sustained injuries from a rape and was treated at Beebe Medical Center in Lewes.

“She was lured into an outdoor shower, and she was sexually assaulted,” he said. “Whatever happened in the shower was pretty bad.”

Police said they have no suspects, and they could not identify either of the men the women said they met at the bar. “We’ve searched all the surveillance video on Route 1,” Dempsey said.

Surveillance cameras are located only at ATMs and private businesses, although the town is in the process of purchasing its own video surveillance system, which is scheduled to be installed by the end of summer.

Dempsey said Dewey Beach Police see several sexual assaults each year, most often cases in which the victim had too much to drink and was taken advantage of by a suspect whom they know and can identify.

“It’s very rare we get something like this,” Dempsey said.