A WOMAN held at knifepoint managed to fight back after she was dragged into a river and sexually assaulted this morning.

At about 6.30am, police officers were called to reports that a woman had been held at knife-point and dragged into the River Thames in Riverside Park, Scours Lane, Tilehurst in Reading.

The woman in her late teens was approached by a man on Ringwood Road,

The man threatened her with a knife and forced her to take an unknown pill, but she fought back suffering scratches to her knuckles.

The attacker then proceededd to sexuallyy assault her and attempted to rape her, before dragging her into the river.

She then hit him back and he fled the scene.

The attacker also threw her bag into the river during the attack.

Thames Valley Police is appealing for witnesses who may have seen what happened this morning.

The offender is described as a white man, aged in his late 30s and around 5ft 9ins tall.

He was wearing a black North Face puffa jacket with the hood up, grey tracksuit bottoms and white trainers.

He had a gap in his teeth and a gold tooth on the left side of his mouth and spoke with a local accent.

A scene-watch is currently in place in Scours Lane and Deacon Way while investigations continue.

Investigating officer Detective Inspector Rich Jarvis, of Reading CID, said: “This was a shocking incident in which the victim was violently threatened, then sexually assaulted, before being dragged into the river.

“I believe the offender may also have ended up in the river as the victim fought him off.

“I am appealing to anybody who has any information, or who believes that they witnessed this incident, to please call 101, quoting URN 314 (9/2).

“Incidents such as this are rare, but I appreciate the concern this will cause in the local community.

“We have scene-watches in place in Scours Lane and Deacon Way, and there will be an increased police presence in the area while our investigations continue.

“Anyone who has any concerns, or believe that they can help with this investigation, can talk to any officer at the scene.

“You can also make a report online, or for 100% anonymity, call the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

“This distressing attack has left the victim very shaken, but although currently in hospital, she has not sustained any serious injuries.

“I would also re-iterate that anyone with any information, or who believes they recognise the description given of the offender, should contact police.”