POLICE have today stepped up their hunt for a sex attacker who assaulted a man on Southampton Common.

The victim, a 22-year-old local man, was walking along The Avenue after a night out when he heard crying coming from the parking area in Cemetery Road.

Moments later he was pulled into bushes and subjected to a serious sexual assault.

The suspect is described as a white man in his 20s.

The attack took place around 3.45am on Saturday, October 5, but has only just been reported to police.

Detectives are not linking the attack to other serious sexual assaults in Southampton parks last month which prompted police to warn women to avoid walking home alone through the parks at night.

At lunchtime on Friday, September 27, a woman was sexually assaulted in Watts Park near Cumberland Place. A 40-year-old man has been arrested and bailed in connection with the attack.

The following day a woman was raped by a man in Hoglands Park as she walked home from a city nightclub.

Detective Inspector Charlie Rimmer, from Southampton Central CID, said: “We would like to hear from anyone who saw or heard anything suspicious in the area at the time of the incident.

“We do not believe this incident is related to other serious sexual assaults in Southampton parks recently, and are treating this as an isolated incident.”

Anyone with information should call Southampton Central CID quoting Operation Key on 101 or the anonymous Crimestoppers charity on 0800 555 111.