Police were called to Sainsbury's car park in Albert Road South, to reports of a serious sexual assault between 12.20am and 12.40am on Sunday, and remained at the scene with the investigation ongoing.
The 19-year-old girl left PRYZM nightclub with three of her female friends at around 11pm on Saturday night. She had been with one of those friends for some time in the car park before she was assaulted.
The man made off in an unknown direction following the attack.
Detective chief inspector Richard Wall, from the Hertfordshire Major Crime Unit, said: “Although the incident occurred after midnight, we believe the area would have been busy at the time, with many people out attending Christmas parties and enjoying the night time economy in Watford.
“There would also have been staff working in local businesses who may have seen something and many taxi drivers in the area at the time, who may have dash cam footage recorded in the area at the time.
“I would appeal to anyone who saw anything suspicious in the area around this time or who saw or spoke to a group of women around that location to get in touch as soon as possible.”
Anyone with information should contact the investigation team by calling 01707 355 666.
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