An Edmonton police detective is telling people not to walk down alleys after three women were attacked in the southwest Edmonton neighbourhood of Terwillegar Towne.
“If you’re going to walk home alone, don’t use alleyways,” acting Det. Jerrid Maze told a news conference Thursday.
“Alleys aren’t meant for people to walk down. Those are meant for vehicles and people to put their garbage out.”
The three attacks have occurred since November.
In the latest incident, a 29-year-old woman was walking home from work near the 1800 block of Tomlinson Cres. around 10:15 p.m. Tuesday when a man grabbed her from behind and threw her to the ground.
After a brief struggle, the suspect jumped up and fled the area. The woman sustained minor injuries to her face.
Police believe the same suspect is involved in attacks on females on Nov. 8 and Jan. 9, all within a 12-block area.
“We have reason to believe that it’s the same person based on clothing description and the type of attack,” Maze said.
On Nov. 8, a girl coming home from school was jumped and pushed to the ground after she got off a bus in the middle of the afternoon.
On Jan. 9, a 16-year-old girl was on her way home from school around 5 p.m. when she was jumped from behind near a convenience store on Towne Centre Blvd.
Neither girl was injured.
In each case, the suspect jumps the women and pulls them down to the ground. After struggling for about 20 secs, he gets up and leaves
Maze says police believe the suspect doesn’t know his victims.
“It’s more of a crime of opportunity,” he said.
Maze believes more attacks will occur. That’s why police are asking for the public’s help.
The suspect is about 5 ft. 8 in height. He was wearing dark clothing, black gloves and possibly a balaclava in the latest attack.