Saturday, December 29, 2007

Visually impaired woman was assaulted in Phoenix

Phoenix police are searching for a man who sexually abused a visually impaired woman waiting for a bus on Chandler Boulevard near 44th Street in Ahwatukee last week. The 36-year-old woman had dropped her children off at a nearby school and was waiting for the bus at about 9 a.m. on Dec. 10, Phoenix Police Sgt. Frank Matsko said. A man walked up, stood next to her and asked her how she stayed warm in the cold, Matsko said. She told him that she was wearing a sweater, Matsko said. The assaulter then asked the woman why she had a cane with her and she told him she was visually impaired.

Then he grabbed both her breasts with his hands, Matsko said. She screamed and backed way from him, ending up in the street. The man ran away and a passerby helped the woman get out of the street, he said.The woman described the assaulter as having a Middle Eastern accent and dark hair, though she only sees "dark outlines and dark colors," Matsko said.

"She did everything she could," he said. "She screamed. It's disturbing any time a lady is assaulted, especially out in a public place like that, her being visually impaired and questioned by the suspect."Matsko said police do not believe this crime is related to six sexual abuse incidents that occurred between late 2005 and summer 2006 within a 1 1/2-mile radius of Warner Road and 48th Street.

Anyone with information about the crime is encouraged to call Crime Stop at 602-262-6151 or Silent Witness at 480-WITNESS.


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