L.B.P.D. says suspect could be involved in 3 attempted sexual assault cases

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The Long Beach Police Department is seeking the public’s help with identifying a suspect that is wanted in connection with an attempted sexual assault that occurred on Wednesday, June 30, 2010, at approximately 4:00 a.m. in the area of Anaheim Street and Cedar Avenue.

The victim, who is in her early twenties, was walking along the sidewalk when confronted by the suspect who grabbed her and tried to take her cellular phone.  During the attack, the suspect groped the victim and tried to remove her pants.

The suspect is described as a male Hispanic, 5’’4″ to 5’’6″, 120 to 150 pounds, and was last seen wearing a long sleeve black shirt, faded blue jeans, white Nike sneakers, and with a long shaped tattoo or mark on the left side of his neck.  Prior to the incident, the suspect was seen riding a small BMX style bicycle.

Detectives from the Sex Crimes Detail believe this incident may possibly be related to two other attempted sexual assaults that occurred in the same area.  The suspect’’s physical description and the manner used to commit the June 30th attack, match the two previous incidents.

In the December 6, 2009 attack, which occurred at approximately 11:00 p.m., the 19-year-old victim was walking to a friend’’s house when the suspect rode up behind her on a “Razor”” scooter.  The suspect threatened that he had a knife and then groped the victim. A witness scared off the suspect. In the February 12, 2010 attack, the 23-year-old victim was walking home at approximately 4:00 a.m. while talking on her cellular phone.  The suspect confronted her from behind and took her phone.  He pointed a handgun at her, forced her into a nearby alleyway and tried to remove her pants.  When she began screaming, the suspect fled.

In all three cases the suspect appears to have been familiar with the area and may have been able to blend into the neighborhood.  In the last two attacks the suspect approached single women who were distracted while talking on a cell phone.

The Long Beach Police Department reminds residents to practice the following safety tips:

  1. Always be alert and aware of your surroundings, including the people around you
  2. Limit use of electronic devices such as cell phones or MP3 players to avoid distraction
  3. Stay in well-lighted areas as much as possible
  4. Stay away from dark parking lots, alleys, walkways doorways and restrooms where someone could hide
  5. Whenever possible, travel with a friend … there is safety in numbers
  6. Keep your keys in your hand when walking to your vehicle
  7. Report suspicious activity or individuals immediately by dialing 9-1-1

Anyone who may have information regarding these incidents or of the suspect’s identity is urged to call the Long Beach Police Communications Center at (562) 435-6711 or the Long Beach Police Department’s Sex Crimes Tip line at (562) 570-7878.  Additionally, tips may be submitted by visiting www.lacrimestoppers.org or by calling (800) 222-TIPS (8477).

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