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2d Harvard woman attacked, police say

Somerville police are searching for a man who allegedly assaulted a Harvard University student early Monday morning, officials said.

The female student had left the MBTA Porter Square station and was walking along Beacon Street near the Cambridge-Somerville line when a man allegedly grabbed her arm and pulled her into an alleyway at 1:20 a.m., Harvard University police said.

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The victim screamed and defended herself and was able to flee the area. She did not see in what direction her attacker ran, officials said.

Somerville police released a sketch of the alleged attacker, whom the victim described as a “thin black male, in his 30s, clean shaven, and wearing dark clothing,” police said.

A similar attack occurred last Wednesday, when a woman was attacked while walking on Richdale Avenue after leaving the same Porter Square station. She reported the attack to Cambridge police, who are investigating.

“Whether or not one suspect may be responsible for both incidents remains under investigation,” Somerville police said Wednesday.

Somerville police are investigating the attack and urge anyone with information to contact detectives at 617-625-1600.

Students and faculty were urged by Harvard University police to travel in groups, use well-lit routes, and avoid wearing earbuds while walking at night, the statement said.

Catalina Gaitan can be reached at catalina.gaitan@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter at @catalina_gaitan.
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