Police in Newburyport, Massachusetts, are warning the public as they investigate the fourth sexual assault in the city since June.
Police, who call the suspect a dangerous sexual predator, say the latest incident happened around 9:30 p.m. Monday night, when a teenage girl was walking down High Street near the town's high school. Her boyfriend heard her screams and was able to chase the man away.
The following attacks have been reported previously:
- On June 22, 2014 at 10:30 p.m., a 20-year-old woman was attacked and groped on Merrimac Street while walking home.
- On Sept. 9, 2014 at 8:30 p.m., a 23-year-old woman was sexually assaulted in nearly the same location on Merrimac Street while walking home from Downtown Newburyport.
- On Sept. 25, 2014 at 10:50 p.m., two 23-year-old women were attacked and groped near the MBTA entrance on Parker Street while they were walking from Downtown Newburyport to the train station.
In all of the past assaults, a woman has been attacked from behind; however, the most recent attack was more brazen than the others, according to police.
"I think there's a dangerous person out there that's attacking women," said Tom Howard, the Newburyport city marshall. "It's the same person."
The latest attack happened near Melissa Foley's home. She said she knows it gets dark early and is taking precautions for her and her daughter.
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"She's not running outside at night anymore because it's just not a good idea," she said.
The suspect is described as a man in his 20s, who was wearing a hooded sweatshirt. The description matches the description in at least two other cases in Newburyport.
Anyone with information about the attacks is asked to call Newburyport Police Department at 978-462-4411. They say all calls may remain anonymous.