Police investigating possible sex assault in East Austin

Attempted Sexual Assault on Millrace
Attempted Sexual Assault on Millrace (KXAN Photo/Chris Sadeghi)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin police are trying to determine if a possible sexual assault at Davis White Northeast District Park Friday afternoon is connected to a series of similar cases in North and Northwest Austin over the few months. Police say the call came in around 12:15 p.m. for a sex crime in the 6600 block of Millrace Drive in East Austin.

Initial information indicates the suspect had on all black clothes, including a black hat. When police originally arrived at the location, they setup a perimeter and canvassed the area with police dogs and a helicopter but the search did not turn up a suspect.

A witness tells KXAN News when he arrived at the park, the female victim was the only person on the track and she had a baby in a stroller along with two dogs. As he was jogging, the witness said the first time he passed her, she was on her phone, but on the second pass she was crying and asked what street she was on.

In the past two months, there have been six cases of sexual assaults and attempted sexual assaults in the North Austin corridor. Police say the incidents happened at Highway 290 near US 183, Duval Road near Floral Park and on Northgate Boulevard. The exact locations for the first four incidents have not been released. The attacks happened in common areas: the parking lot, a walkway corridor and stairwell of their apartment complexes, but most recently a case was reported in a neighborhood off Duval Road.

In regards to Friday’s case, police say it does appear there are similarities to the other six cases but they can’t say definitively at this time.

In all previous cases, the suspect attacked the women from behind, forced them to the ground and either attempted to or sexually assaulted the victims. The attacker is described by Austin police as a Hispanic male, around 5’7″ to 5’9″ and of average build. They say he is an English speaker. The suspect usually wears a hoodie, face mask or bandana to cover his face. Police say he may be armed with a knife.

Date & Time of Previous Incidents

    • Dec. 27, 2015 approximately 6 p.m.
    • Jan. 17, 2016 approximately 6:30 a.m.
    • Jan. 18, 2016 approximately 9 p.m.
    • Jan. 23, 2016 approximately 5:40 p.m.
    • Feb. 6, 2015 approximately 3:30 p.m., 11600 blk of Jollyville Road
    • Feb. 8, 2015 approximately 9:30 p.m., 11300 block of Santa Cruz Drive

Anyone with information on the incidents are asked to contact APD’s Sex Crime Unit tip line at 512-974-5230. Detectives say they do not have any additional information to provide, but want the public to be aware of their surroundings.

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