CORAL SPRINGS (CBSMiami) – The area around Wyndham Lakes is a sort of highway for joggers, walkers and bikers.
In the mornings and evenings, the area is often packed.
But after Coral Springs Police say a man attacked two women in two separate early-morning incidents over the past few weeks, people out for a stroll or a jog are paying closer attention to their surroundings.
Coral Springs Police released a composite sketch of the attacker on Wednesday. The individual is described as a black man in his 20’s, with an average build, short haircut and wearing dark pants and a dark short-sleeve shirt. Police believe the man was trying to commit a sexual battery on the women. Each attack occurred on the sidewalks of Wyndham Lakes Boulevard.
Andrea Silva frequently exercises in the area.
“I run here every day,” she said. “We have to be more vigilant.”
Police are urging people to do the same thing — stay in well lit areas and exercise with a friend. They say the first attack occurred in the early morning on February 24. That woman managed to get away. Investigators say the next attack occurred this past Monday and that woman also escaped.
“The most recent victim was attacked from behind,” said Officer Tyler Reik. “She was kicking the suspect. Did enough to fight him off.”
Lisa Riggi has lived in the area — a cluster of gated communities — since 2000. She’s taking extra precautions.
“I don’t like it,” she said. “Thats why I have my watchdog and my mace, my pepper spray.”
“You have to be aware of your surroundings,” Riggi said. “You can’t be too safe.”
The concern will continue until police catch the attacker. Meanwhile, people who enjoy the outdoors promise to still do so but with a wary eye.
“A lot of people walk and a lot of people jog,” said a longtime resident named Kathy, who declined to provide her last name. “It’s important that they catch him.”
Police are offering some more advice.
They suggest bringing a flashlight and a cell phone when you exercise and only use one headphone instead of two so you can be more aware of your surroundings.
As always, if you see something suspicious — call police.
If you can help solve these cases, call Coral Spring Police or Crimestoppers at 954 493 TIPS.