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Revellers advised to ‘double check’ if their taxi is genuine after woman sexually assaulted

PUBLISHED: 18:40 16 April 2018 | UPDATED: 12:39 17 April 2018

Late-night revellers are advised to double check if they are getting into a genuine taxi after a woman was sexually assaulted in Norwich. Picture: Archant library.

Late-night revellers are advised to double check if they are getting into a genuine taxi after a woman was sexually assaulted in Norwich. Picture: Archant library.

Archant

Late-night revellers are today being urged to double check if they are getting into a genuine taxi after a woman was sexually assaulted in Norwich.

Norfolk police is continuing its investigation into reports that a woman was attacked after being picked up by what she thought was a taxi on Sunday.

The woman, who is in her 20s, was assaulted at around 2.15am in the Norwich area on April 15.

Police said the victim was being supported at the Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) by specialist officers.

Now, councillors and black cab drivers in the city are urging people to ensure they are getting into a licenced vehicle.

Chris Herries, Norwich City Council’s cabinet member for safer, stronger neighbourhoods, said the incident was “unsettling”.

“You should aways double check that you are getting into the taxi you have ordered,” she said.

“If it is a black cab then you know that hopefully it is going to be safe.

“But if it is a firm you are phoning, make sure you know the name of the company you have phoned and that the taxi is from them.”

Police said they had been working with the victim to obtain a full account as to what happened.

No further details about the exact location of the incident have been provided.

Det Sup Katie Elliott said: “We are still in the early stages of our investigation but I would urge members of the public, particularly those on nights out, to always check before getting into an unfamiliar vehicle, and to stay with friends wherever possible.”

Norwich black cab driver Paul Gray said it was important that people recognised the features of a genuine taxi.

He said the most obvious sign was that there would be a light on the vehicle indicating it was a taxi.

He added: “There should also be a badge in the back of the vehicle with a taxi number on it. Every driver should also have a city council ID card. It is white for Hackney cabs and blue for private hire.”

Police advised people not to accept lifts from strangers, adding that passengers should always check the driver’s identification.

• Any witnesses can contact Norfolk Police on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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