Police have confirmed that a woman was raped on the Fallowfield Loop on Wednesday morning.
The incident took place near the Sherwood Street area of the Loop, where police received reports of a concern for the welfare of a woman at approximately 4:50am.
The woman, who is in her late teens, was said to be in a parked car with a male friend when they were threatened by two men wearing masks. One of them was believed to be carrying a gun.
The woman ran from the car and hid at the entrance to the Fallowfield Loop, where she was raped by another man wearing a mask.
Detective Inspector Chris Potter said: “This investigation is still at a very early stage. While there is a scene in place and officers remain in the area, we need people who witnessed anything to get in contact with us urgently.”
He appealed to members of the public for information but said that at this stage the attack was thought to be an “isolated incident”, adding that he “would like to reassure the public that additional officers will be patrolling the area, whilst detectives are working extremely hard to understand what has happened”.
The Fallowfield Loop is a fully pedestrianised path that leads from Chorlton-cum-Hardy in the west to Fairfield in the east, passing through Fallowfield, Levenshulme, and Gorton. It is a popular cycle route for students, connecting them to Fallowfield and the University.
Cyclists recently held a protest attended by approximately 350 people over the number of muggings on the route, which have been a cause for concern.
The lack of police presence on the streets of Fallowfield is a continued cause for concern for students, who in October last year petitioned the police and politicians to take action over violent crime in the area. The petition reached over 6,000 signatures and was brought to Mayor Andy Burnham.