Police reveal mask in attempted sex assault

NORTHEAST PHILADELPHIA - October 23, 2009 On Friday afternoon, police released a picture of a mask similar to the one worn by the suspect.

The woman has been able to tell police the man was about 6'2" tall, was heavy (but not muscular), was wearing dark clothing including a black hooded sweatshirt, and had on a white, Halloween-type mask with slits for eyes.

She also told police the man had the hood pulled tight around the mask, so she could not see any of his characteristics.

Except for a scratch on her hand, the woman was not hurt.

It happened around 7:30 a.m. Friday in the 2800 block of Holme Avenue in the Northeast.

Police say an assailant reportedly tried to drag a woman into the woods and assault her.

Investigators say the victim was walking to work on Holme Avenue and was across the street from Nazareth Hospital when a man came out of a wooded area of Pennypack Park and grabbed her.

The attacker dragged the woman into the woods and tried to sexually assault her. However, police sources tell Action News the woman fought back, punched the man in the face, broke free, ran off and called authorities.

Investigators also said, earlier Friday morning, a jogger came out of the woods and asked police if they were looking for someone. When cops told him they were, he pointed them in the direction of a man by a fence, shirtless, who may have been trying to get rid of his clothes.

Police brought in dogs and started searching the area, but no one was found.

Lincoln High School and Meehan High School were put into lockdown as police searched the area.

Anyone with information is asked to call Philadelphia Police SVU at: 215-685-3251, 3252, 3265 or 215-686-TIPS

Not the first attack

This is near the location of a similar attack earlier this month.

Police say a suspect impersonated a police officer and attacked a woman in Philadelphia's Pennypack Park on October 1st.

It happened along the 8500 block of Algon Street in Philadelphia.

The 25-year-old victim, police say, was walking down Algon Avenue around 4:40 p.m. with her baby in a stroller. The attacker claimed to be a plain-clothes police officer and said he needed help finding a lost dog. That's when he tried to grab the woman and take her down into the nearby woods.

The woman eventually broke away with her child.

The suspect is described as:

  • White Male
  • Age 30 to 40
  • About 5'11" tall
  • About 200lbs
  • Light complexion
  • Husky Build
  • Blond buzz cut

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