Woman Reports Being Sexually Assaulted Near Allston Campus

UPDATED: August 28, 2013, at 6:25 p.m.

According to an update released by the Boston Police Department Wednesday, a police investigation led to the conclusion that the sexual assault report described below was “erroneous.” The evidence and statements gathered by the police did not appear to support the allegation, and the investigation was closed, the update said.

August 19, 2013

A woman reported being sexually assaulted early Sunday morning near the University’s Allston campus, according to a community alert released by the Boston Police Department later in the day. The aggressor was reportedly an unlicensed taxi driver whom the woman had hired prior to the assault.

The victim told police that at about 2 a.m. Sunday she hailed the unlicensed vehicle, described in the advisory as a dark-colored, mid-sized sedan, near Linden and Pratt Streets in Brighton, and asked for a ride to Cambridge. The aggressor proceeded to take the victim to a location thought to be off of North Harvard Street, according to the police advisory.

The aggressor was identified by the police advisory as “an Indian Male, 5’8”, medium build, medium complexion, in his mid-thirties with short cropped dark hair and very crooked teeth.” The suspect was also reported to be possibly wearing a black shirt and to have a thick accent.

The Harvard University Police Department distributed the Boston police advisory to the Harvard community via email Monday at around 10:20 a.m.

Boston police is leading the investigation into the case with the aid of the Cambridge Police Department, Harvard police, and Massachusetts State Police. Boston police declined to give additional comment and said the investigation is still open.

The state police department is also investigating a similar case in which a woman reported being assaulted in Newton after entering an unlicensed taxi on Aug. 6. State police did not publicly release information about the reported assault until being pressed by the Boston Herald 10 days after the attack occurred.

Sunday’s advisory also alerted community members not to enter unmarked taxicabs and to remain vigilant and circumspect at night. On Monday the Boston Police Department also posted information on its website to help community members identify licensed taxis.

Anyone who might have relevant information to Sunday’s reported assault is asked to contact Sexual Assault Unit detectives at 617-343-4400, Sunday’s advisory said. Community members who are willing to anonymously aid the investigation may also call CrimeStoppers at 1-800-494-8477, or text the word “TIP” to 27463.

—Staff writer Antonio Coppola can be reached at acoppola@college.harvard.edu. Follow him on Twitter @AntonioCoppolaC.

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