Reported Rape at Memphis BBQ Fest

(Memphis) While thousands enjoy the Memphis BBQ Fest, police search for a rapist.

Police say a woman was raped at the event Friday night and her attacker has not yet been caught.

It happened around 11 p.m. Friday night near Beale and Riverside.

A police officer tells WREG that the man attacked the woman in a place no one could see, inside a porta-potty.

“That’s not good,” said Robert Short, a BBQ competitor. “Did they catch him?”

Police say they don’t know who the man is yet and he attacked despite six levels of security at the BBQ fest, including police presence, sheriff’s deputies, the FBI, Homeland Security and a TACT unit.

“I am from New York and this is a lot of police presence,” said Carl Short. “I can`t get over how much police presence and to have something like that happen is almost unheard of because up North we don`t have that kind of presence.”

Organizers of Memphis in May released a statement saying they are taking every precaution to ensure the safety of guests.

“Anytime you get excessive drinking and partying going on then there is just going to be bad things that come out,” said Missy Courtney, a BBQ competitor.

Courtney says despite having a firefighter as a husband and all the police presence at the event, she’s still going to on guard while police work to make an arrest, “Always make sure that you are with someone. Play the buddy system just like you learned in school.”

“You know, police can’t be everywhere. Even with the big sky camera and stuff like that,” said Short.

If you have any information on this crime, you are asked to call CrimeStoppers at 528-CASH.


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