DeKalb police warn of man sexually assaulting women


Police released this sketch of the suspect wanted in the violent attacks

STONE MOUNTAIN, Ga. - DeKalb police are warning women to be on alert after a man has attacked several women walking along Hambrick Road in Stone Mountain.

One woman who walks in this area all the time told Channel 2's Sophia Choi she is now carrying a knife with her.

Investigators said the case is a top priority and they're actively trying to catch the man before he attacks another woman

Choi found Earlene Bland walking her daughter and granddaughter to a corner store on Hambrick Road.

She decided to escort them, after hearing about the man running around attacking women in the area.

"A man just walked past us today and said, 'Good morning,' and I didn't speak back, because I'm assuming now that every man I see is that man," Bland said.

DeKalb County police said the man sexually attacked four women between Oct. 1-20.

Police said the incidents always began innocently.

"These women were walking alone, and when the suspect came up to them, (he) approached from behind, and engaged them in conversation," said Mekka Parish of the DeKalb County Police Department.

But then it quickly turns violent.

"As they turn to walk away, he grabs them, touches them inappropriately and even tries to rip their clothes off," Parish said. "The women were able to get away only a couple suffered some minor physical injuries."

The attacks happened on Hambrick Road, between Memorial Drive and Rockbridge Road exactly where Debra Herring walks alone, often. Herring doesn't' have a car and refuses to change her ways.

"I can't live in fear, I just can't live in fear and stay closed in," Herring said.

Bland is also still out and about, but she's taking precautions.

"From now, we walk with a steak knife, we walk together and no more night -walking. It's bad," Herring said.

Until police catch the man say they really want women to keep an eye out and try to walk in groups in that area.

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