FAIRFAX COUNTY, Va. — The Fairfax County Police Department has released a photo of the man wanted for a series of indecent exposure and assault incidents that happened on the W&OD Trail. The person of interest is also suspected of being involved in a recent attempted abduction.
On Aug. 26, a woman was grabbed from behind by a half naked man while on a morning walk on the Reston trail. Hours later, Herndon Police reported a similar incident on the trail near Ferndale Avenue.
Just a few days later, on the evening of Aug. 30, a man attempted to abduct a teenage girl who was walking near the trail.
Police believe that the person of interest in both cases is the same man. In addition, it is suspected that he is linked to several other similar incidents that happened on Aug. 3, 15 and 18 on the trail near the Fairfax County Parkway.
Sergeant Tara Gerhard said during a press conference that the police department is heavily investigating the case to determine patterns and see if there any connections to past cases. They believe he has been involved in incidents not only on the trail but outside of it as well.
"Any incident where someone is attempting to grab or expose themselves is a serious crime in itself," Gerhard said. "Any information, any video surveillance you have, no tip is too small."
The suspect has been described as a Hispanic man, 5 feet 11 inches tall, with an athletic build.
Patricia Kay says she bikes or runs on the trail four or five times a week. She told WUSA9 that the word of the attacks has spread among locals.
"It will be best for everyone if he is caught," Kay said.
The police department is asking for the public's help with providing any information or camera surveillance that could help with the investigation.
Police informed WUSA9 that they are putting all the resources they can into finding the suspect including additional officers canvassing the W&OD trail as well as using their canine and helicopter units.
"We are asking you [to] tell somebody where you're going if you're going out to exercise or walk," Gerhard said. "Make sure you take your phone with you, report suspicious activity ... If you're wearing headphones keep the music at a reasonable level, and pay attention to your surroundings."
Anyone with information is asked to call 703-691-2131.
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