A major police investigation is underway after a SECOND teenage girl was raped at a popular music festival.
Detectives launched an appeal for information after a 19-year-old girl was grabbed by a gang of men and raped at Latitude Festival, near Southwold, Suffolk, on Thursday night.
Just 24 hours later a 17-year-old girl camping at the festival site was attacked and raped by a man inside a tent.
Police are now patrolling inside the campsite urging women to stick together in large numbers and avoid walking alone at night for the remainder of the festival.
The second rape took place in a tent in the red area campsite at around midnight on Friday, following the headline performance by Florence and the Machine.
The teenage girl, from Suffolk, reported the sex attack to police on at 2pm on Saturday afternoon after she fled the festival and went home.
Officers raced to the festival and found the tent where the rape was alleged to have happened with help from the victim’s friends.
A 19-year-old man, from Essex, was arrested at the campsite on Saturday at 9.10pm and taken to Lowestoft police station, in Suffolk, accused of rape.
Police do not believe the two sex attacks are linked and still hunting for the gang of men responsible for Thursday’s assault.
A spokesman for Suffolk Police said uniformed officers and the festival’s security staff have increased patrols around the site at the Henham Park Estate.
The spokesman added: ”At this early stage there does not appear to be any link to the first incident where a young woman was raped by a stranger on Thursday night
”Police are not normally inside the festival site because it is run by private security employed by organisers Festival Republic.
”Obviously because of what has happened on Thursday and Friday night this has changed.
”Uniformed police officers will be carrying out joint patrols with security staff employed by the organisers Festival Republic and will be handing out flyers on the site.
”These carry a simple appeal for information following the incident.
”Officers are also planning to send messages to Bluetooth enabled mobile phones on the site in order to reach as many potential witnesses to the rape as possible.”
Police are continuing to investigate a sex attack at the festival which took place at around 10pm on Thursday.
The victim was camping with friends but left her tent and got lost looking for a toilet on the red area campsite.
She noticed a group of young men and thought she recognised one, described as of muscular build and with a shaved head.
As she got closer she realised it wasn’t him, but asked the group for directions.
The group offered to help show her the way and after a short distance some of the men, including the man with the shaved head, left to go in another direction.
The rest of the group walked the teenager away from the path and into a dark area of trees.
A number of the group then grabbed her, and she was raped by at least one man, possibly against a tree.
The men ran off and the victim, from Norwich, Norfolk, who was wearing denim leggings, a yellow and white checked shirt and black cardigan and Wellington boots, made her way back to her tent.
Her attacker is thought to be white. medium build, around 5ft 7in, possibly in his 20s and had dark curly hair.
He had a cockney accent and described by the victim as ”looking like a student”.
Officers took an initial account from the victim, who was then medically examined and are now carrying out a full investigation, including viewing CCTV.
Artists including Tom Jones, Corinne Bailey Ray and Noah and the Whale are playing the event, which features a mix of music, art theatre and poetry.
The festival renowned for its ”family atmosphere” has attracted around 30,000 fans.
Anyone with information on either incident should contact Suffolk Police on 01473 613500.
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