Austin police investigating second assault in three months at Circle C park

Austin police are investigating the attack of a woman who was jogging at Circle C Metro Park.

This is the second assault there in the last three months and so far police do not have a suspect in either case.

This latest assault took place Monday evening around 7:30. Police were called to the park after a woman said she was assaulted near the basketball courts there. “It began with a female who went out jogging. During the course of her jog, she was attacked by a male who was hiding behind a bush,” said Detective Christian Maynes with the Austin Police Department Sex Crimes Unit.

The suspect was described as possibly Hispanic in his 40s, 5’9”, with a medium build.

He was wearing a long sleeved black shirt, black pants and a black baseball hat.

During the assault, the woman screamed and then saw a man walking his dog nearby. The victim believes that man may have scared off her attacker. “He was within feet, so he more than likely heard something. So we're asking if this male knows about this incident, if he has some information relevant to our case, we're asking that he comes forward,” Maynes said. 

The report taken by police is similar to another attack at the same park on May 20 around noon.
               
“Once again it was another female. This time she was jogging with a baby in a stroller. When she stopped to get a drink of water, she was attacked from behind,” said Maynes. 

That victim described the suspect as a Hispanic man in his 40s, 6’ tall with a medium build. He was also wearing a black shirt and a black baseball hat, but he had on dirty blue jeans.

“We don't have enough information to suggest they're related or not. They could be or they could not be. That's why we're asking the community to kind of help us with this, to see if we can establish a suspect to kind of link them to one of these cases, maybe potentially the other cases,” Maynes said.

Police said because of the two cases they will be stepping up patrols in the area.

These attacks have encouraged people at the park to take additional precautions.

“I always have my cellphone on me and making sure I'm not too secluded and I'm around people. I usually come with my friends, so I'm going to try doing that from now on,” said Megan Whittington who visits the park frequently. 

“It just makes me a little bit more aware of my surroundings and kind of keeping an eye out for people who are in the area,” said Crystal Marek who was at the park with her children Friday. 

Having an attacker on the loose won't keep them from enjoying time outside.

“I mean, it's always shocking when you hear something like that happens in area that you think is safe, but you can't be afraid to go anywhere, because bad things can happen no matter where you are,” Marek said. 

The Austin Police Department is asking anyone who may have information about either attack to call detectives and if you see someone suspicious call 9-1-1.

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