In just over a week, a man has assaulted two women on Maple Grove trails in nearly identical situations, leading police to step up bike patrols and issue a crime alert Wednesday.
At 5:30 p.m. June 10, a woman jogging in a neighborhood off West Eagle Lake Drive saw a young man sitting on a bench with a blue bicycle next to him. After she passed him, he approached her, pinched her on the behind and then ran off, getting on his bike, police said. A woman walking on Rice Lake Trails at 9:15 a.m. Tuesday reported an identical incident.
Sgt. Tom Engels said the suspect didn’t injure the women and police aren’t sure whether he had a “sexual intent or if it’s just a high school kid pulling a prank.”
“But the concern is [whether] this is preparing for something” that’s more aggressive, he said. “If we can put an end to it quickly, we want to get the information out there.”
The women gave police the same description of the incidents and the suspect, described as a young man between the age of 16 and 19, 170 pounds with darker skin, medium-length dark wavy or shaggy hair, a wide-flat nose and no facial hair.
Police have stepped up bike patrols on trails throughout Maple Grove. Anyone with information on the suspect should call detective Jon Wetternach at 763-494-6199.