A vigilante-style group in the Bronx has taken action to protect its community from a man who police say has accosted nine girls and young women since Februrary.
The man is the suspect in nine forcible gropings in the north central Bronx area.
He allegedly only approaches his victims – seven girls between ages 12 and 16, and two young women, ages 18 and 21 – when they are walking or jogging alone.
He is reported to approach them from behind, grope them and run away.
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Now, the Hero Initiative has joined the police’s fight to stop the suspect.
“We were out in the Bronx tonight putting up hundreds of flyers about a serial sex attacker,” the group wrote on a Facebook page. “As always, the community was 100% behind us and it was amazing to get so much support from the local people.”
The grassroots group, which has factions throughout America as well as some abroad in the United Kingdom, notes that it consists of “members of the Community Emergency Response Team, Citizen Police Academy, and neighborhood watch groups.”
As they describe on their website, the group’s members “volunteer in weekly outreach events, used needle pickup patrols, free self-defense classes and ongoing crime prevention.”
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Police, too, have spoken out about the need to stop the perpetrator.
“Our kids should be able to walk…(without) being touched by a stranger,” Lt. Austin Morange said.
Morange noted that the suspect is usually silent when he attacks his victims, although he has been reported to speak to several of them.
“A few times he’s said something like: “You’re pretty. You’re sexy. You’re beautiful,” Morange said.
The Hero Initiative’s posters describe the suspect as a black male who is about 20 years old and has a scar below his right eye.
Photo Sources: Daily Mail