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Archive for Tuesday, June 24, 2003

Homeless women report rape in separate incidents

June 24, 2003

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Two homeless women told police they were raped Friday -- one in the gazebo at South Park and one under the Kansas River bridge.

In each case, the woman told police there were two men involved, but police said they didn't have enough information to say whether the incidents were linked.

Paula Gilchrist, director of social services for the Salvation Army's shelter at 946 N.H., said she knew the 26-year-old woman and the two men -- ages 21 and 34 -- involved in the alleged rape at the bridge, which happened between 8:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Friday.

"Both the victim and the two reported suspects have been residents of our shelter off and on," she said.

She said that to the best of her knowledge, "everyone was drinking" before the alleged incident happened.

"It has been turned over to the police," she said. "The guys are going to say it didn't happen; the girl is going to say it did. Our concern primarily is that the guys know we're watching them, and with the girl, we were pretty concerned with her safety."

Gilchrist said she didn't know anything about the report of the rape in the gazebo. According to the police report from that incident, a 52-year-old woman was sleeping there and awoke shortly after midnight Friday to find one of the men on top of her.

The woman told police one of the men had a ponytail. Gilchrist said neither of the two men suspected in the other incident matched that description.




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