LIVONIA (WWJ) - Is there finally a break in the case of missing Danielle Stislicki?
A man now in Livonia police custody for an attempted rape has been called a "person of interest" in the 28-year-old Farmington Hills's woman disappearance in December.
A police source talking to WWJ Newsradio 950 on Tuesday said the man whose Berkley home was searched in connection with Stislicki's disappearance has been arrested in the attack of a woman on the Hines Park bicycle path in Livonia on Sept. 4 of last year.
In that case, the 28-year old victim was headed east on the path, west of Levan, when a man grabbed her by the neck, hit her in the face and began dragging her into the woods toward the Rouge River.
While she struggled, the man allegedly tried to take her clothes off, telling her he wanted to have sex — but the woman was able to fight him off. She flagged down a passing motorist and used his phone to call 911 while the suspect fled on foot, police said.
The Stislicki case, meantime, remains an open investigation now more than six months since she went missing after leaving work in Southfield on Dec. 2.
Stislicki's Jeep was found a day later, parked outside her home at the Independence Green apartments in the area of Halsted and Grand River — with her purse inside. Although police found no signs of a struggle, Ann Stislicki has said she suspects that her daughter was abducted.
Police say they receive tips regularly, with fliers posted across metro Detroit with a reward of up to $129,000 up for grabs in the case.
Elizabeth Rose Newton, sister-in-law to the man now in custody, has been outspoken about her suspicions that her family member may have been involved.
Of this latest development, she told WWJ: "It gives me hope that time can move forward and things can move forward in some kind of direction. It might not be perceived as positive for everyone...especially my family, but it provides hope for the Stislicki family, as far as closure goes, on maybe knowing more."
"Maybe police will be able to find out more now that they have him in custody," Newton said.
WWJ is withholding the man's name until which time, if ever, he is charged in either case.
Anyone with information should call the Farmington Hills Police Department's Command Desk at 248-871-2610. Tipsters may remain anonymous.
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