Sex assaults connected?

Police are seeking the public’s help in an attempted sexual assault in Leonia this week that they suspect may be connected to others in Englewood and elsewhere.

The 50-something Korean victim told police she was grabbed from behind and forced to the ground around 7 a.m. Tuesday on Glenwood Avenue near Crescent Avenue by a man who tried to pull off her sweatpants.

As she fought back, a passerby “interrupted the attack and scared off” the assailant, said Leonia Police Chief Jay Ziegler.

She described him as black, light-skinned, about 5’9”, with a thin build, wearing all black clothing and a black wool hat. He may have had a thin mustache, she said.

Over the past 10 months, 11 victims in all have reported assaults in which they were grabbed behind by a man who sexually assaulted them or tried to.

The descriptions are all very similar, oplice said.

In fact, the Leonia attack occurred hours before a similar incident was reported in Englewood. Five other attacks have been reported in Hackensack and four others in Englewood.

Anyone who saw or knows anything of the attacks is asked to call the Leonia Police Department at (201) 944-0800.

Ziegler also urged people to “be aware of your surroundings when out walking, to carry a cellular telephone, and report suspicious activity immediately.”

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