Detectives investigating the murder of a Saudi Arabian student who was stabbed 16 times as she walked to Essex University have arrested a 19-year-old man.

The teenager, from Colchester, was initially arrested overnight on Thursday after a woman reported that a man had attempted to grab her as she jogged in the town.

He was then arrested shortly after 4pm on Friday in connection with the investigation into the murder of Nahid Almanea, who was knifed to death on Tuesday.

Essex police said the man was initially arrested just after midnight on Friday over a separate assault. “His arrest followed a report from a woman that while she was jogging near Peache Road, Colchester, at around 10pm on Thursday June 19, a man had approached her and tried to grab her,” police said in a statement.

“She was able to fight him off and made her way home and then immediately contacted police. Police searched the area and a man was subsequently arrested and taken into police custody. Following further enquiries he was then further arrested shortly after 4pm today in connection with the murder investigation. He remains in custody for questioning.”

Earlier on Friday, detectives warned against concluding that the murder was a hate crime.

In an attempt to calm tensions over the unexplained attack, Essex police chief constable Stephen Kavanagh and Nick Alston, the Essex police and crime commissioner, said jumping to conclusions was “deeply unhelpful, wrong and dangerous”.

The statement came a day after police confirmed that they were investigating whether Almanea was targeted because her full-length robe and hijab headscarf marked her out as a Muslim.

Almanea, a 31-year-old PhD student who arrived in Britain at the beginning of the year, had been walking alone to the Essex University campus at about 11am on Tuesday when she was attacked… see more

source: Guardian UK