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Last Updated: Wednesday, 19 September 2007, 19:00 GMT 20:00 UK
HIV fear of 'needle attack' woman
Puncture wounds in Katie Dawson's stomach
Katie Dawson suffered two small puncture wounds in her stomach
A young woman has spoken of her fears she could have been infected with HIV or hepatitis after apparently being stabbed in the stomach with a needle.

Katie Dawson, 19, from Strood, near Rochester, Kent, suffered two puncture wounds in the assault in Chatham.

"My greatest fear is that I could die because of these diseases that I might have through what happened," she said.

Her attacker was described as a female, aged between 16 and 19, who was accompanied by two men.

Ms Dawson was sitting on a bench with friends in the early hours of Saturday, in Railway Street in Chatham.

The group of three approached and were said to have been abusive towards them.

Wait for tests

Ms Dawson recalled: "I remember feeling a sharp pain, and I was stunned and thinking 'Why has she done it?'.

"It's going through my head that I might have HIV or hepatitis.

"I can't stop crying. I'm worried, scared, devastated - loads of emotions really."

But she will have to wait six weeks for a hepatitis screening and three months for an HIV test.

Hospital staff said she suffered "two small wounds that were consistent with needle punctures".

Det Con Dave Cooper said: "Kent Police are taking this matter very seriously due to the possibility of infection and potential fatal consequences for the victim."

Ms Dawson's attacker has been described as white, about 5ft 2in tall, with blonde shoulder-length hair, dark eyes, and a round face with a pointed jaw.

She was wearing cream or yellow-coloured clothing.


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