Woman attacked while exercising in popular Brevard park
Indian Harbour Beach police looking for man who attacked woman in Gleason Park
Police say the 53-year-old victim was exercising in the popular park on Wednesday when she was grabbed by the back of her shirt and pulled to the ground.
When the victim got to her feet, police say she recognized the suspect. He grabbed and tore the victim's shirt. He then placed her in a headlock and covered her mouth with his hand and began dragging her to a wooded area.
"That's terrible," said Lucie Lorch, who lives nearby and walks in Gleason Park almost every day with her friend Valerie Reedy.
"We come here all the time and there's always people walking," said Reedy.
"There's always people, dogs, it's very busy," said Lorch.
Police say a witness who observed the attack screamed, causing the suspect to flee.
The victim said she went out to dinner with the suspect two or three times in 2012. The suspect told her he lived in South Florida.
In December 2012, the victim stopped all communications with the suspect and has not spoken to him since.
The victim told police the suspect is known as "Sun Man" and goes by the name of Sunny Thompson, however detectives do not believe that is his real name.
"I'm kind of alarmed," said Doug Cook, who has walked in Gleason Park for 12 years. "I have a lot of friends and kids that come over here."
As for Lorch and Reedy, they say they'll no longer walk alone or walk at night.
"Although, I would have up until tonight," said Lorch.
"I would have too. Before this," said Reedy.
The suspect is described as a white male with an olive complexion and possible acne scars.
He has sandy blonde hair that is thinning at the top.
He is in his 40's and weighs between 230 and 240 pounds. The suspect's front tooth is cracked and noticeable when speaking. He also has a heavy, unknown accent.
Police say the suspect has been known to drive an older, white, Mercedes station wagon.
If anyone recognizes or has any information about this suspect, contact the Indian Harbour Beach Police Department at 321-773-3030 or Crimeline at 1-800-423-TIPS (8477).