A 21-year-old woman walking in a secluded part of the University of California, Santa Cruz campus shortly after noon Sunday was raped and beaten, a university spokesman said today.
The woman was alone on a path in a wooded area between the Upper Quarry Amphitheater and the Classroom Unit building at about 12:25 p.m. when a man attacked her, campus spokesman Jim Burns said.
The stranger battered and raped her and then ran south toward Steinhart Way between Quarry Plaza and McHenry Library, Burns said. "What's unusual about this is it occurred in the daylight and in this case the victim did not know the assailant," Burns said.
The area of the attack, in the core of the campus, was "in a somewhat remote area" that is mostly undeveloped, Burns said.
The woman, who was visiting the campus, was even more vulnerable as fewer people were around for the President's Day holiday, Burns said. "It can happen on a three-day weekend when students have gone home for the weekend," Burns said. "You don't have the regular foot traffic of people coming and going to a classroom unit that was not open yesterday."
The woman told the UC Santa Cruz Police Department that the suspect was white, 30 to 40 years old, about 5 feet 10 to 5 feet 11 inches tall and weighing about 200 pounds, Burns said.
The suspect had a round face, black medium-length hair, green eyes, a moustache and goatee and a tattoo on his shoulder-bicep area. He spoke with a deep growl-sounding voice and smelled of cigarettes, Burns said.
He wore a dark blue T-shirt, dark blue jeans, a black belt with a silver buckle and had Oakley-style sunglasses on top of his head, Burns said. The campus Police Department is handling the investigation.
Anyone with information about this incident is urged to notify campus police at (831) 459-2231 or leave an anonymous report at (831) 459-3847.