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Sexual assault reported near Duke campus

Posted 7:14 a.m. Thursday
Updated 6:02 p.m. Thursday

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— Duke University sent a crime alert to students late Wednesday after a report of a sexual assault near campus.

A woman told Durham police she was walking on Swift Avenue between Campus Drive and Duke University Road at about 10 a.m. Wednesday when a man pulled her into the woods, sexually assaulted her at knifepoint and stole her credit card.

Authorities haven't said whether the woman was a Duke student or not.

"I was definitely scared. I talked to my roommate about it right away," Duke freshman Amber Wolf said, adding that she is trying to be more aware of her surroundings when walking on or near campus.

Although the assault occurred off campus, many students, especially graduate students, use the area as a shortcut

"It's definitely surprising and very discouraging, considering I usually consider this to be a pretty safe area to go out or run and walk the dog or something like that," said Kristin Gabor, who was out for a jog on Campus Drive Thursday. "It’s unfortunate that, especially females, have to be particularly aware of their surroundings when they’re out alone."

The assailant was described as a clean-shaven man in his mid-20s wearing jeans, a gray T-shirt and a black flight jacket with a hood.

Duke police have increased patrols in the area, and Durham police went door-to-door Thursday morning on Swift Avenue in an effort to get any more information that could help lead to an arrest.

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call Durham Crime Stoppers at 919-683-1200.

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