Woman Dragged Into Bushes, Sexually Assaulted While Jogging in South El Monte Park

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Investigators are seeking witnesses after a woman was thrown into bushes and sexually assaulted while running in a South El Monte park Thursday evening.

The 500 block of Durfee Road in South El Monte, part of the Whittier Narrows Recreation Area, is shown in an undated Google Maps Street View image.

The woman was jogging along a trail on the 500 block of Durfee Road, in the Whittier Narrows Recreation Area, when she was approached from behind around 5:30 p.m., Los Angeles County sheriff's officials said in a press release.

The man proceeded to pull the woman down into bushes along the trail and sexually assaulted her, deputies said.

The woman fought off the attacker and escaped, while he then got on his bike and fled out of sight toward Durfee Road.

The suspect is described as a Latino man between 20 and 30 years old with light skin, a black faded haircut and a teardrop tattoo under his left eye. He measures about 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighs around 175 pounds, officials said.

He was last seen wearing a black T-shirt and black sweatpants.

Detectives believe he may have assaulted additional victims.

Also Thursday night, a woman was jogging in the Van Nuys area when a man with a large knife approached her and took her cell phone, then proceeded to push her in the bushes and jump on top of her, according to Officer Irma Mota with the Los Angeles Police Department.

The suspect in that case was only described as a Latino man. No arrests have been made in connection with the incident.

Anyone with information about the incident or who may have been the victim in a similar crime is encouraged to call the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department at 877-710-5273.

Information can also be provided anonymously by calling 800-222-8477.

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