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Police Probe Brazen Attempted Sexual Assault In Fairmount Park

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - A brazen attack in broad daylight has women on alert.

Police say fortunately, the victim escaped with just a few cuts and scrapes but many women worry and wonder if this was the work of a man who has evaded police for so long.

Michelle Naps, a regular jogger along Valley Green Road in Fairmount Park said, "We saw police cars coming down. Another woman running turned me around and said the police had responded. I heard she had fought off an attacker. She was bleeding."

The 17-year-old victim told police she first noticed her attacker when she began her jog near Cresheim Creek at around 8 o'clock Monday morning. Twenty minutes later, back at the same spot, she told police the same man tackled her and tried to pull her clothes off. Police say she fought him off.

"Scary. They need to catch whoever it is," Vivian Camphor of Chestnut Hill said.

The victim described her attacker as a Hispanic male who's between 5'8" and 5'10" tall with a muscular build who at the time was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and dark pants.

Another jogger, Melissa Carrasquillo asked, "Is it the Fairmount Park rapist again?"

The description does sound a lot like the Fairmount Park rapist who, according to police, has attacked four women and raped and murdered a medical student since 2003.

Naps added, "Absolutely we think about it all the time. All the runners down here who run regularly, we think about it all the time. The word is to try to stay together, if you see someone running at your pace, you try to stay with them."

Police say the concern is understandable but at this time they cannot say the latest attack is connected to the Fairmount Park rapist as their investigation is continuing.

In the meantime, Police are urging anyone who was out jogging in the area between 8am-9am, who may have seen something that looked suspicious but didn't think much of it at the time to come forward.

Reported By Elizabeth Hur, CBS 3

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