SAVANNAH, GA (April 14, 2015): Special Victim’s Unit officers from the Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police Department are investigating the attempted assault of a 17-year-old girl near the Cloverdale neighborhood area Monday afternoon as well as similarities to other attacks.

The victim said she was walking in the area of West 42nd Street and Ogeechee Road about 2 p.m. when she saw a slender male walking quickly in front of her. When she entered a path through Laurel Grove Cemetery, the suspect emerged from bushes, grabbed her and told her to remove her clothing.

The victim fought until a bicyclist started riding down the path and the suspect released her and ran toward Ogeechee Road.

On Aug. 25, a woman reported a man attacked her while she was walking through in the cemetery, forced her into a wooded area and raped her.

The description also is similar to three other attempts on teen-aged girls in the Cuyler-Brownsville neighborhood in which students walking to school were approached in lanes at West 42nd and Burroughs streets on March 3, and West 44th and Florence streets on Sept. 8 and 29th. Those attacks involved girls age 13-16, all of whom were able to escape the attacker.

Although those attacks took place in different neighborhoods, only six or eight blocks separate them.

In each case, the suspect was described as a slender black male wearing blue jeans and holding a white T-shirt over his face.

Metro Police Chief Joseph H. “Jack” Lumpkin Sr. said the situation demands the immediate attention of his officers, all other law enforcement and the public.

“I can think of nothing more demanding that the protection of innocent teenagers who are walking in our neighborhoods,” Lumpkin said. “We again are calling upon officers to increase their vigilance on patrols and the public to help us identify and remove these offenders from our neighborhoods.”

Metro and Savannah-Chatham County Public School System Campus Police have increased patrols in the area and have advised students to take care, especially when walking alone. They also have been advised to call Emergency 911 if they sense any suspicious situation.

Anyone with information on the cases is asked to call Crimestoppers at (912) 234-2020 or text CRIMES (274637) using the keyword CSTOP2020. Tipsters remain anonymous and may qualify for a cash reward.

A Tip Line also is open directly to investigators at (912) 525-3124 and most area clergy have agreed to serve as liaisons for anyone who would like to share information with police anonymously.