UPDATE: Police: Be aware, vigilant as sexual predator roams

Posted: Updated:
azfamily.com

PHOENIX -- Police believe a sexual predator who had been targeting a specific area is now on the move and now there's a reward for information that leads to his arrest.

Parents on high alert

Tuesday night another teen was nearly attacked by the man police believe is linked to other, sexual abuse and sexual molestation cases.

Six out of ten attacks attributed to the suspect happened in the area between Interstate 17 and 19th Avenue and Indian School and Camelback roads.

Now police say the predator has struck outside that area four times.

The latest attack happened near 23rd and Glenrosa avenues, which is the second attack west of the primary target zone. Glenrosa Avenue, however, seems to be familiar territory of the suspect as four girls were attacked on that street.

According to Phoenix police a 13-year-old girl was walking on Glenrosa Avenue when she noticed a suspicious person and took off running. The suspect also took off running towards a gray four-door vehicle.

No attack took place, but police are linking the near attack to the nine others that have happened.

According to teen's family, the would-be victim recognized the suspect's face from copies of the composite sketch that police had been handed out in the neighborhood.

"It's important that throughout the city of Phoenix and throughout the Valley that people are aware that the sexual predator does exist and that he's preying upon our youth, our young girls," said Det. Reuben Gonzales of the Phoenix Police Department.

"He's physically attacking them. He's grabbing them; he's forcefully trying to prevent them from screaming so in some cases he's placing his hand and his entire hand over their mouth, over their face."

Police said the victims have ranged in age from 7 to 17, with the majority being between 9 and 12 years old.

The suspect is described as 20 to 30 years old, 5 feet 7 inches to 5 feet 11 inches tall, weighing 150 to 250 pounds. He might wear glasses. There's a $5,000 reward leading to his arrest and conviction.

Police have said they're having a little bit of trouble gathering details about the suspect and his vehicle because some of his victims are so young.

Anybody with information about the suspect should call Silent Witness at 480-WITNESS.