SPD: Man in custody may have attacked two women in Seattle on separate occasions
SEATTLE - Police have arrested a man who they say committed two separate broad-daylight attacks on women in Seattle in a little more than 24 hours. At least one of those attacks was a sexual assault.
Investigators told FOX 13 News that the suspect already had a warrant for a similar incident.
The 25-year-old man accused of these crimes is not charged, so FOX 13 News is not naming him yet.
The first documented incident happened Friday at 8 a.m. on the stairs along Howe Street in the Eastlake neighborhood. The staircase is a popular spot for joggers, and a stranger attacked a woman running the stairs that morning.
"As she was running up the stairs, [he] followed her up and sucker punched her," said Severn Anderson, the fiancé of the victim. He tells FOX 13 News his partner had pepper spray and fought the attacker, and that the attacker then ran off.
He says he posted about the incident online and found out about another recent incident in the same area.
"We have to do something more than what we were doing. We posted to Nextdoor. We made the police report. We conferred with the other people that there’s police reports, but you want to out there and make sure this doesn’t happen again," he said.
On Sunday and Monday, Anderson said he canvased the area where the incident happened. He placed signs warning people about the attack.
"It’s messed up. The stairs are such a happy community place," said Galileo Russell, who frequents the stairs. "Somebody came here and made it an unsafe place."
Seattle police said on Jan. 4, about three miles away from the stairs, there was another incident.
Investigators say a 25-year-old man attacked a woman at her job in Green Lake. Police say the man punched her and groped her.
The attacker ran away, but police found him and arrested him.
Investigators say the man is booked for burglary and indecent liberties. He was also booked for a $500,000 warrant from a previous incident involving burglary and attempted liberties.
Police think the man is the same suspect in both attacks. They are still investigating.