Suspect sought in southside break-ins and assaults

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Richmond Police detectives are asking for the public’s help to identify a suspect who is entering homes through unlocked doors and exposing himself or physically assaulting female occupants.

Six incidents have occurred between August 29 and September 11 that detectives believe are connected. All of these incidents have taken place between 1 a.m. and 7 a.m. in Ashley Park, the Crossing at Bramblewood Estates and St. Johns’s Wood neighborhoods off of Jahnke Road.

“The suspect in these incidents is knocking on windows and taking advantage of unlocked doors,” said Captain James Laino with the Major Crimes Division. “We urge residents to secure their homes by locking all doors and windows and report any suspicious persons or activity by calling 911.”

The first incident occurred August 29 when officers responded to a report of a break-in and assault in the 6900 block of Marlowe Road. The victim stated she was awakened around 6:15 a.m. by an unknown black male inappropriately touching her. She screamed and the suspect fled when another resident entered the room.

Another break-in and assault with a similar sequence of events was reported on September 2 in the 500 block of Harrow Road. At approximately 2:15 a.m. the victim woke to an unknown black male touching her inappropriately. Another resident came into the room and scared the suspect away.

Four days later on September 6, two incidents were reported in roughly an hour. The first took place at approximately 6 a.m. in the 6900 block of Marlowe Road and the second happened around 7 a.m. in the 1400 block of Brownleaf Drive. Both victims reported hearing knocking at a bedroom window.

The victim on Marlowe Road turned on the outside light and saw an unknown black male, who ran away as the light came on.  Police found signs of an attempt to force entry into the residence, evidenced by a tear in the porch screen.

On Brownleaf Drive, the victim told police she saw an unknown male outside of her window exposing himself. He was last seen walking toward Whitesand Drive.

Around 1 a.m. on September 9, officers were called to the 500 block of Rossmore Drive in reference to a break-in and indecent exposure. The victim advised that an unknown black male entered her apartment, exposed himself and then fled on foot.

Sunday morning just before 5 a.m., officers responded to the 1000 block of St. Ann’s Drive for a reported break-in and assault. The victim stated an unknown black male entered the home, touched her inappropriately then fled through the back door of the residence.

Our own Tracey Smith spoke with one of the victims, who believes these incidents need to be stopped sooner rather than later.

“I just want them to catch him,” the victim said. “Whoever it is, they are doing it too much and they are doing it over and over again. What we need to do is stop it before something really, really bad happens.”

In each case, the suspect has been described as a black male with a small but muscular build and short hair in twists or curls. At the time of the incidents, he has worn all black or dark clothing.  He may also be wearing a beanie or stocking-style hat.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to call Major Crimes Detective Janet Mills at 804 646-6734 or Detective Greg Russell at (804) 646-7715. Citizens can also call Crime Stoppers at 780-1000 or text Crime Stoppers at 274637, using the key word “ITip” followed by your tip.

This is a developing story. Stay with 8News online and on air for the latest updates.

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