Two female joggers in Irvine have been groped by a man who approached them on a skateboard within the past two days, police said Tuesday.
Investigators believe the same person was responsible for both sexual battery incidents, and they’re asking for the public’s help finding the assailant. Both incidents occurred in the Woodbury residential development.
The most recent incident occurred about 8:15 p.m. Monday, when a skateboarder rode up behind a woman jogging at Rolling Green and Statuary. The man shoved the jogger to the ground and covered her mouth with his hands, police said. Unable to keep her from screaming, the skater “stood up and touched her in a sexual manner” before fleeing on his skateboard, an Irvine Police Department news release stated.
"She had moved off to the side to let him pass and she noticed there was no more sound, so she turned and he was pretty much already on top of her and she just had time to respond as he tackled her," the woman's husband told KTLA Tuesday night.
The man, who identified himself only as Corey, said at first she thought the skateboarder was trying to steal her phone and fought back, screaming as loudly as she could.
His wife was still traumatized by the frightening incident, according to Corey, adding, "She was definitely very upset."
That same night Corey's wife was attacked, police got a report of a similar crime that occurred between 6:15 and 6:30 p.m. Sunday at Groveland and Townsend, about a mile from the scene of the Monday attack. The jogger in the Sunday incident was groped by a man riding past her on a skateboard, police said.
The skateboarder is described as a white man in his early 20s, 5 feet 10 inches to 6 feet tall, with a thin or medium build, wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and dark pants.
Anyone who has home surveillance video from affected streets – or from homes facing the Jeffrey Open Space trail – is asked to contact police Detective Keith Herter at 949- 724-7183 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Irvine police plan to increase patrols in the area.
KTLA's Tracy Bloom contributed to this story.