Police Get More Info On Suspect Grabbing Female Joggers - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Police Get More Info On Suspect Grabbing Female Joggers

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MOLINE, IL – Police are still looking for a man who they believe is grabbing female joggers in the Illinois Quad Cities. Since yesterday, they have received eight more tips on the suspect.

Detective Scott Williams, Moline Police Department, says more female victims have also called saying they have been grabbed or attacked by a man while running.

Five cases have been filed in the past year with description of the same man. He is a white male, thin build and a goatee, 5’8 to 5’10, around 25 to 30 years old, usually seen wearing jeans and a hoodie. All the incidents reported have happened around 8:00 in the morning, which leads police to believe that there are more unreported victims.

Police are urging runners to protect themselves. Det. Williams says carrying pepper spray, mace, or a small edged weapon can be helpful. These are lightweight and small items that can be used for self-defense.

Strength in numbers is key to protecting yourself from an attacker. Det. Williams says, “He’s never approached two women at one time. It’s nice to have a running partner or training partner and safety is one reason.”

Becca Wilder, an avid runner, says these incidents make her more cautious. She says, “I’m usually with at least two people, sometimes more. If someone falls back, we periodically make sure everybody is with us and that everybody is doing okay.”

Joggers also need to be careful when listening to music. A distracted runner becomes an easy target. Coach at St. Ambrose and Manager at Running Wild, says, “[Joggers] are not aware of their surroundings because they have their headphones in. They are too loud and can’t hear what’s going on and that makes you an even bigger target in that situation.”

One of the things runners or joggers can do is to just have one headphone in, or have the volume lower so you can hear what is going on around you.

If you run into an attacker, police say to use self-defense, then get away immediately. Det. Williams says, “We wouldn’t want any vigilant justice or people to engage. Certainly if they are at risk, protect yourself and then get out of there as quickly as possible.”

He also says to call the police immediately if you see suspicious activity. Det. Williams says, “A good response is to get away and call police immediately because then we would love to saturate the area with patrol and actually catch this guy.”

For anyone with more information about the suspect, or for people who have been victims in the past, you can contact Moline Police Department or anonymously through Crimestoppers.

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