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Police In Santa Ana On The Hunt For Sexual Predator

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SANTA ANA (CBS)  — Santa Ana police Wednesday released a composite sketch of a man they say sexually assaulted a 19-year-old woman Saturday in the bed of the Santa Ana River.

The suspect was described as Hispanic, about 20-something, approximately 5 feet 8 inches and 140 pounds. Officials said that the man has a medium build and a light complexion. He was wearing a gray baseball-style cap, a gray sweatshirt and black pants, Santa Ana police Cpl. Anthony Bertagna said.

The suspect was also described as having acne or chicken pox scars on his face, as well as stained yellow teeth with brown spots.

The attack occurred near First Street about 11 a.m.

“She looks younger than her age and is small, so we think the suspect is looking for younger girls,” Bertagna said.

The victim was riding a skateboard to her boyfriend’s soccer game when the man asked her if she wanted to “tweak,” Bertagna said. She was near a construction site when the man approached.

When she asked him what he was talking about, he grabbed her and forced her into the riverbed. He then reportedly pulled off her shorts and sexually assaulted her with his fingers, according to Bertagna.

“We want parents in the area to know about this individual,” Bertagna said.

The woman fought the man off and went to police. Officials sealed off the area in an unsuccessful attempt to capture the suspect.

Police believe the suspect targeted the riverbed area because it is a popular location for young people. Daisy Mateo, a Santa Ana resident, told us that she uses the path all the time.

“I walk it two to three times a week walking home from school,” she said.

(©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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