MECHANICSBURG – The Mechanicsburg Police Department is asking village residents to be vigilant and report suspicious activity after two sexual assaults were reported.
Chief John Alexander said Tuesday that police were alerted on Jan. 17 that a person was sexually assaulted last October. Police were informed by a relative of the victim.
Alexander said the suspect reportedly entered the victim’s home and committed the assault. He said the victim’s house was unlocked and asked residents to lock their houses and cars and keep their lights on.
Alexander said a possible suspect was described as a 6’1” male weighing over 200 pounds wearing a black ski mask, black sweatshirt pullover, cargo pants, brown cowboy boots and a chain wallet.
The suspect is believed to be a white male with brown eyes in his 40s or 50s.
On Monday at 9:38 p.m., Alexander said, a medical call went out for a sexual assault in the village. In this incident, Alexander said the victim went out to get an item from her vehicle when she heard the sound of rustling.
As the victim went to investigate the sound, Alexander said, she noticed a male crouched who proceeded to sexually assault her.
The suspect information in this case is similar to the October case, as Alexander described him as a 6’1” male weighing over 200 pounds. The suspect during this incident was described to be wearing less clothing than in the first incident with his pants falling down and unlaced shoes.
A suspect vehicle in both cases has been a dark Chevrolet Malibu with the model year between 2010 and 2012.
Alexander said both reports are under investigation and the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation is involved. He noted these have been the only two calls police have received involving this potential suspect but encouraged residents who might have been involved in similar incidents to come forward.
Mayor Greg Kimball said the village needs the community’s help and encouraged residents to contact police when they see suspicious activity at any time.
Alexander said police plan to interact with people more and stated police plan to add an extra officer on patrol from the time it gets dark at night until sunrise as the investigation continues.
“We have a curfew anyway, but if we see people walking, we’ll be interacting with them. We’ll be talking to them to see what they’re doing,” Alexander said. “Cars in the alleys you’re probably going to get stopped and we’re probably going to be asking you what you’re doing.
“What we ask people to do is if you’re going to go out to your car, have someone go with you,” he said. “If you hear a noise don’t go investigate it call us, we’ll go investigate it. Keep your lights on, keep your house locked, keep your car doors locked those are just little things you can do.”
Residents can contact Mechanicsburg police at 937-834-3303 or 911.
Nick Walton can be reached at 937-652-1331 Ext. 1777 or on Twitter @UDCWalton.