Posted on May 16, 2011 at 9:27 PM
Tuesday, May 17 at 9:47 AM
FEDERAL WAY, Wash. -- Federal Way police are tracking a serial groper who is targeting young women and teenagers walking alone. There have been six attacks near bus stops along Pacific Highway South in the area of S. 288th Street and S. 320th Street since January.
"It's kind of shocking to me,” said Axa Molina, 17. The groper has targeted women and teenagers, all of them petite and alone like herself.
"You're always supposed to be on guard at all times. I know when I walk, I'm always looking around, I have my phone on all the time," she said.
"I carry mace with me because there's rapist and stuff out here and it scares me a lot, because I'm tiny. I have to worry about that a lot," said Dacrisha Hutton.
Police believe the suspect may be using the bus stop to pinpoint women getting off the bus, walking home by themselves. The attacks appear to be increasing in frequency.
"Coming up behind them, controlling them with one arm and then groping them in the other in the buttocks area," said Cathy Schrock, Federal Way Police Department spokesperson.
Police say the best defense is being aware.
"Not talk on the telephone, take out the ear buds and concentrate on your surroundings,” Schrock said.
The suspect is a white male 24 to 30-years-old, 5 feet 6 inches to 5 feet 8 inches tall and 160 pounds. He has shoulder length brown or reddish brown hair. He wears a hoodie with the hood up.
Police believe there may have been more attacks, that for one reason or another, have gone unreported. Anyone who has information or who has been a victim is asked to call the Federal Way Police tipline at 253-835-6799.