A woman was raped in a layby in Thatcham, Berkshire, after she stopped her car to investigate an abandoned baby car seat.
Thames Valley Police is appealing for more eyewitnesses and footage on the incident which took place at around midnight on Monday.
The victim was driving on the A4 and stopped her vehicle opposite the junction with Cox’s Lane because she was concerned there might be a child at risk after seeing an empty car seat nearby.
The police said the incident is ‘concerning’ and has understandably caused anxiety in the local community.
However, they added that such offences are extremely rare and a thorough investigation is underway to identify the offender who was not known to the victim.
Detectives are also trying to establish the significance of the child’s car seat and its links to the offence.
Detective Inspector Alice Broad, investigating, said: “The investigation is working at pace to identify the suspect of this offence.”
“The victim has provided a full account of the incident and is being supported by specially trained officers.
The forces are advising the public to report to the police if they see anything on the roadside that is concerning and to make a note of the precise location.
The police are urging more people to come forward with footage, whether dashcam, mobile phone or CCTV, between about 11 pm on Sunday to 12.15 am on Monday, August 16.