Police comb south Dallas in search of serial rapist

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by TERESA WOODARD / WFAA

WFAA

Posted on September 5, 2013 at 9:43 AM

DALLAS — Dallas police officers crawled out of a window and jumped to the driveway below.

They returned Wednesday afternoon to an abandoned home in the 4300 block of Spring Avenue where a serial rapist struck twice on August 22.

It's just down the street from where Patsy Dotie lives. "I said, 'Oh My, God its right here by me!'"

Another woman came forward Wednesday, reporting an August 28 assault on Second Avenue. She is the eighth known victim of a serial rapist, all within three miles of Dotie's home.

The suspect has been attacking since June, but the neighborhood didn't hear about the crimes until September.

"When it happened in the Lake Highlands community, it was everywhere, all over the news," said one woman who didn't wish to give her name. "But then when it comes to our South Dallas community, it's like they didn't care and didn't want to share the information of what was going on."

Dallas police defend their actions, and say they did share the information as soon as it became clear that a single man was believed responsible for multiple attacks.

Each assault has happened near Fair Park, between midnight and 6 a.m. Victims all describe the suspect as a black man, 5'-6" to 5'-11", about 200 pounds, wearing prescription eyeglasses, and a mask or piece of clothing covering his face.

Another witness has now surfaced and police are hoping she helps them create a sketch of the suspect; they plan to meet with her on Thursday.

Not all the victims were openly sharing details with detectives, police said, and a six-week gap from June to August prevented investigators from establishing a pattern.

Detectives are concentrating on that gap as they work this case. Police say they are looking at jail records to see if someone was in custody then and is out now, and raping again.

The woman who didn't want her name used grew up in the neighborhood, and isn't happy with the explanation from Dallas police.

"Had they have shared the information there may not have been that many rapes that went on," she said.

Police are now sharing the information with community groups. An officer stopped by Betty Hooey's home Wednesday afternoon, knowing she's the director of the women's ministry at Cornerstone Baptist Church, just blocks from the attacks.

Hooey passed out fliers at Wednesday night services advertising a community meeting to be held Thursday night at six o'clock at True Lee Baptist Church on Bertrand. Those fliers also contained a detailed description of the suspect.

"We need to be vigilant," she told the women in her group. "Don't try to apprehend him; that's not your job. You can pray for him, but don't try to apprehend him."

The suspect description is now being widely circulated along with description of the possible getaway car: Either a grey Honda Civic or a Volvo, both older models.

When Patsy Dotie heard that, she got chills.

"I've seen a Volvo coming through here slowly all the time for the last month," she said. "That Volvo comes through here all the time. I told my daughters, 'I bet you that's that same man.'"

Police said increased patrols by uniformed and plainclothes officers will continue. Hooey told the congregation to be smart and have faith that justice will come.

"It could be your mother; it could be you; it could be your next-door neighbor," she said. "And we want them to be treated the same way as someone with money. The same way."

E-mail twoodard@wfaa.com

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