Sarasota Police Officers searching for suspect who attacked woman

SARASOTA, Fla. – May 27, 2015 – 11:45 a.m.

Officers with the Sarasota Police Department are searching for a suspect who attacked a woman while she was walking her dog.

The female victim was walking her dog at approximately 10:30 p.m. within the last week in the 1500 block of North Lockwood Ridge Road in Sarasota. The victim told officers a white male described as 5’11", 220 pounds, muscular build with brown hair, strangled her from behind with a metal wire.

The victim’s dog was able to scare the suspect and the victim was able to fight off the suspect. The suspect fled on foot in an unknown direction. While canvassing the area, a neighbor walking his dog told Officers he saw a white male hiding behind dumpsters in the area several days after the reported attack.

"We encourage anyone who might see something out of the ordinary to give our Officers a call," said Detective Maria Llovio. "We would rather have an Officer respond and have the call turn out to be nothing than not be called at all."

If you’re planning to walk at night, please remember these safety tips:

• Walk in well-lit areas if possible. Avoid dark alleys, parked cars and parking garages.

• Carry a whistle. Carry it around your wrist or in your hand for easy access.

• Don’t wear headphones. Wearing headphones can prevent you from hearing things around you.

• Walk with confidence and purpose. Keep your head up/

Anyone with information on this case is encouraged to call Detective Maria Llovio at 941-364-7336 or leave an anonymous tip with Crime Stoppers by calling 941-366-TIPS (8477) or online at www.sarasotacrimestoppers.com