By Jonathan Wilson
Police in Virginia have linked a Halloween night sexual assault with a string of similar cases stretching up to New England.Â Officers says DNA evidence ties the case to a serial rapist who's been active for 13 years, and may still be at large.
Police from Fairfax County, Prince William County and the town of Leesburg joined authorities from Prince George's County Maryland to make a plea to the public for help. Authorities have DNA, but only a rough description of who they're looking for: a black male, of medium build in his thirties or 40s.
Fairfax County Chief of Police David Rohrer says despite the lack of physical details, he's confident that geographic details of these crimes are enough to jog someone's memory.
"For someone to travel from this region to Connecticut or Rhode Island, and stay there for a period of time, and be back in this region--that we think should be a key identifier to somebody thinking about all of this," says Rohrer.
DNA evidence links the offender to 13 different cases and 12 rapes, and one charge for peeping.
Deputy Chief Kevin Davis of Prince George's says the offender may be a native of that county: that's where the first of these linked cases happened starting in 1997. "He seemed to be familiar with the area based on some of the things he said to victims in those assaults," says Davis.
The victims range in age from teenagers to women in their 40's.