Reward upped to $8,500 in Winter Springs attack

Woman, husband hire PI to pursue leads in Tuscawilla case

11pm Woman Attacked while Jogging
11pm Woman Attacked while Jogging

WINTER SPRINGS, Fla. – Winter Springs police on Monday announced that a reward has been upped in the case of a woman who was beaten and robbed near a fire station in the Tuscawilla area of the city.

The attack happened the night of June 8 as the 55-year-old woman left her home in the Arrowhead neighborhood to go for a jog.

"As part of this investigation, we are actively seeking information from anyone that will lead to the identification and successful prosecution of the suspect in this case," Winter Springs police said.  "In conjunction with Crimeline, an additional $1,500 has been received, which now brings the total reward to $8,500."

According to police, the woman attacked near the fire station along Northern Way.  The woman told police that the assailant said, "Don't resist, I have a gun," before dragging her into the grass, beating her and stealing her cellphone.

"Shocked, very shocked, because it's a safe neighborhood, or so we thought," said Jennifer Branham, who lives nearby.  "You would think that would be the safe place to be."

Police said several officers went to the area and looked for possible suspects but didn't locate anyone.

"The police department has seasoned investigators looking into every possible detail and they have been doing so since the case was started," Winter Springs police said. "We do not believe there is any outstanding danger to the public and feel this case is isolated at this time."

Police clarified to Local 6 that the attack was termed "isolated" because "we have no corroborating information in the county or surrounding areas that lead us to believe otherwise."

After the attack, the victim ran to a nearby 7-Eleven to get help. She arrived with blood on her face, and clerks told Local 6 her eyes were swollen shut.

The woman and her husband have hired a private investigator to pursue leads.