22-year-old student sexually assaulted near CSU campus; Woman bit attacker to escape

FORT COLLINS,Colo. - A Colorado State University student was sexually assaulted near campus early Saturday morning.

The 22-year-old woman was approached by a man while she was driving westbound on West Lake Street, according to Fort Collins police spokeswoman Rita Davis.

"A male stepped out in front of her car and she stopped. The male then came around to the side of the car, opened her car door and pulled her from the car, drug her over to sidewalk and sexually assaulted her," Davis said.

The woman was able to fight off her attacker and during the struggle she bit the suspect’s left shoulder and scratched his forearms.

The University sent an email and text alert to all staff and students an hour after the incident. Students on campus said they're shocked.

"I was getting some texts about it and my roommates were talking about it," Junior Jackie Cabel said. "One of my friends lives over there, so she's kind of freaking out about it."

The woman was not injured and did not require any medical attention.

Fort Collins police describe the attacker as a black man in his early 20s, between 5 feet 9 inches and 5 feet 11 inches tall, with acne on his face. He has an average to muscular build with short, black, curly hair. The attacker was last seen wearing a T-shirt with an unknown design on the front and dark jeans.

The woman was able to provide police with a description of the man.

Fort Collins police tell 7NEWS they're investigating whether this attack is connected to two previous ones in the same area.

On Oct. 24, CSU police responded to a sexual assault near Jack Christiansen track, one block north of Friday night's attack. A woman walking on the track said she was grabbed by a man armed with a knife, wearing a black ski mask. The woman said the man had a brown or tan Carhartt-style jacket, work boots and Levis.

A similar attack occurred on the track Sept. 13. In that case, a man wearing a ski mask shoved a male to the ground and tried to sexually assault him.

Personal safety tips can be found on the Fort Collins Police Services webpage at www.fcgov.com/police.

Anyone with information about this incident or the attacker should contact Fort Collins Police Detective Marty Shaw at 970-221-6577, or Crime Stoppers of Larimer County at 970-221-6868 where you can remain anonymous and possibly be eligible for a cash reward.  Crime Stoppers can also be reached at www.stopcriminals.org.