COLUMBIA, Md. (CBSDC) – Howard County police are searching for a man who sexually assaulted a woman as she was running along a footpath in Columbia on Wednesday.

The female victim was running on a path near the intersection of Stone Cloud and Majors Lane on Aug. 7 around 6:30 p.m. when she heard someone running behind her.

That’s when an unknown male suspect grabbed her breasts from behind. She yelled and the man fled. A witness running in the area followed her scream, and later helped her file a police report.

They described the suspect as a black male, 20- to 30-years-old, with no facial, wearing dark colored athletic clothing.

Police have increased patrols in the area on bike, on foot and in cars. Anyone with information is asked to call (410) 313-STOP (7867).

Police urge citizens to heed the following safety tips when walking or jogging on sidewalks or pathways:

•Familiarize yourself with the area, and know your route before you travel.
•Stay on designated sidewalks and pathways, and do not venture off into isolated areas.
•When possible, bring a buddy.
•If traveling alone, tell family or friends where you are going and when you expect to return.
•Stay alert, and carry a cell phone.
•Do not wear headphones because they may distract you from your surroundings.
•If a stranger approaches, follows you or makes you feel uncomfortable, turn around, call police and head toward a group of people or a home.


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