SOUTHWEST MIAMI-DADE (CBS4) — Miami-Dade Police are looking for a rapist who abducted a woman from a gas station in Southwest Miami-Dade County just after midnight Wednesday. The abductor drove the woman to a nearby area where he sexually assaulted her at gunpoint.
Investigators say the 29-year-old woman had stopped at a gas station to make a purchase around 12:20 a.m. She went inside to pay for her purchase and left her car unlocked. When she got back in the car, a man was in the backseat.
He pointed a gun at her head and forced her to drive to an adjacent warehouse area near SW 121st Street and 117th Court where he sexually assaulted her.
The crime left customers at the gas station worried about the area.
“You always have to be conscious of the people around you,” said Stella Martinez. “Yes I feel very vulnerable right now. I try to keep my car door locked at all times when I get gas.”
Tania Mora also said the crime made her think of her safety and the state of the world.
“We can’t be safe in our society nowadays,” Mora told CBS4’s Peter D’Oench. “I mean, you can’t even leave your car door open for a few seconds without somebody trying to kill you. It’s not right.”
Mora said she “definitely” secures her car before going in to pay for her purchase and the news of the crime only reinforced her commitment to doing that.
“I have seen so many incidents, on TV, where things happen,” Mora said. “Anybody can take advantage of you in a moment. Lock your car at all times.”
“I never put gas in my car at nighttime,” said Carmen Lima.”
“Well it makes me feel really bad for this girl,” said 19-year-old Chashary Jiron, a student at Miami-Dade College. “It makes me think it can happen to us. You have to be really careful. One thing I always do is close my door. I lock my doors when I am away.”
“You never know what can happen,” Jiron said. “I hope they find this man, for the sake of everyone involved and all the girls out there.”
The sentiments are shared by others who work at nearby businesses.
“I have a daughter and a wife,” said Mike Sakezles. “It makes me think about them. It’s a reminder of how you have to be so aware of your surroundings and what can happen.”
Authorities say they are looking for a Latin male in his 30’s. He was wearing a red shirt, tan shoes and had tattoos on both arms. He was last seen running from the scene. Police are now distributing a sketch of the rapist around the gas station where the assault happened.
If you have any information about this crime you are urged to call Miami Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS.