Police search for woman’s assailant, issue warning
By Justine Davidson on July 5, 2011 at 3:24 pm
Whitehorse RCMP are calling for the public’s help, and caution, following an attack on a woman in Riverdale early Monday morning.
The woman was walking on the trail between Selkirk and Christ the King schools at around 4 a.m. when a man grabbed her, threw her to the ground and attempted to sexually assault her, police reported Monday afternoon.
The woman was able to fight off the man and flee, police said in a press release. She called 911 at 4:50 a.m. and investigators conducted a ground search with the help of the police dog unit.
“They exhausted all the possibilities in the area and they went back the following day to continue the investigation,” RCMP spokesman Sgt. Don Rogers said today.
No one has been arrested and the suspect is still at large, according to police.
Rogers said the RCMP are not releasing any details about the woman’s condition nor any injuries she may have sustained “partly because of the investigation, partly out of the wishes of the victim.”
Although the woman was able to get away, Rogers said the case is being treated as a serious sexual offence.
“As soon as you grab somebody for sexual purposes, you’ve committed a sexual assault,” he explained.
Police described the suspect as a First Nations man between the age of 20 and 30 with dark hair which is longer on the top and short on the sides and back.
He had a moustache and goatee, according to police, and he was wearing grey sweatpants and a dark coloured sweater, possibly black or brown.
“We believe this was a crime of opportunity and that it was not a targeted attack,” Rogers said,.
“There’s been no other similar incidents or suspicious persons matching the description or MO, at least there’s been nothing reported to us.”
He urged people to use caution on the trails, to travel with a friend and to avoid using the forested shortcuts during the late night and early morning.
Police are asking anyone with any information about the incident to call the Whitehorse detachment, or the anonymous Crime Stoppers tip line at 1-800-222-8477.