Philadelphia police investigating after woman assaulted in Wissahickon Valley Park

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Philadelphia police are investigating a physical assault that occurred in Wissahickon Valley Park on Monday evening.

Police say a woman was physically assaulted along the trail south of Cresheim Creek where the White Trail crosses.

"The report of an assault in the Wissahickon Valley Park this week is very upsetting," said a spokesperson for Philadelphia Parks and Recreation. "We are collaborating with PPD and Friends of the Wissahickon to ensure police vigilance at the site and remind park visitors of basic steps they can take to stay safe when visiting our parks this summer."

Officials say the suspect ran in the direction of Cresheim Valley Road and Emlen Street.

"Of course we were devastated to hear of the assault," said Ruffian Tittmann, Executive Director of Friends of the Wissahickon. "I'd say its really important to plan your visit, know where you are and know how to call for help."

In light of the situation, Friends of the Wissahickon wanted to share some safety recommendations for visitors:

  • When parking your car, lock the doors, carry the keys and do not leave valuables in plain sight in the car
  • Visit with a buddy if possible
  • If visiting alone, avoid using the park during off-peak times and let people know where you're going
  • Be aware of your surrounds, headphone free.
  • Trust your instincts. If you sense trouble because of a person or a place, leave.

Action News analyzed the data and discovered in the last two years on Valley Green Road, there were 67 car break-ins compared to four vandalism/criminal mischief incidents and two "all other offenses."

Park rangers are on site every day between Memorial Day and Labor Day. At other times of the year, Philadelphia police patrol public access points to the park.
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