LOWELL (CBS) – Police are searching for a suspect who sexually assaulted a jogger along the Lowell Riverwalk Friday morning.
Lowell police say a 26-year-old woman was running along a part of the path behind the LeLaucher Park around 10 am.
The victim told police a man grabbed her from behind and sexually assaulted her.
After the attack she dialed 9-1-1 from a nearby parking garage. When officers arrived the victim was taken by ambulance to Lowell General Hospital.
Joggers running by the same area Saturday afternoon were stunned by the news.
“I normally see families and kids so I never really thought anything about it,” said Evelyn Marrero, who runs cross country for Bentley University.
Regulars on the route say that part of the path usually gets a lot of foot traffic, and even at night, the lights from the baseball stadium make it seem safe as well.
WBZ-TV’s Alana Gomez reports
The scene of the crime is just steps away from UMass Lowell and an emergency call box.
“I had heard in the past don’t go out there by yourself but I never really thought about it,” said Alison Bruderer, who often walks the path alone or with her one year old baby girl. That’s a pattern she admits she’ll probably change.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Doug Cope reports
“Definitely we’d want to walk with a group of friends,” said Bruderer.
Tara Martin lives in a condo right behind the Riverwalk and says the area is “almost like a gem over here.”
“There’s always a lot of people around. That’s why it seems so safe,” said Martin.
Police described the suspect as a white or light-skinned Hispanic male, between the ages of 18-25 years old, who is clean shaven and wearing jeans at the time.