Suspect sought in Long Beach senior complex robberies, sexual assault

LONG BEACH, Calif. (KABC) -- Long Beach police are hoping the public can help them identify a man suspected of robbing multiple homes and sexually assaulting one of the victims in a senior apartment complex.

Authorities said at least four incidents have been reported between Feb. 2 and Feb. 5. The robberies occurred between 5:45 a.m. and 7:45 a.m. All of them happened at a senior housing complex near Atlantic Avenue and Via Carmelitos.

"This is very troubling. It's very concerning to us. This suspect who is committing these crimes clearly has no regard for people's safety and is targeting on some of the most vulnerable people in our community. We definitely want to get this person in custody as quickly as possible," Cmdr. Paul LeBaron said.

All of the victims involved were women between 63 and 95 years old. Authorities said in most of the cases, the suspect would knock on the door, force his way inside and then physically assault the women before making off with purses, cellphones and cash. In one of the robberies, the victim was walking outside the complex when the man attacked her.

In the last reported incident, the suspect rang the victim's doorbell, forced his way in and sexually assaulted her before running off with cash. Authorities said the woman suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

Detectives obtained and released surveillance video of the suspect, who is described as being between the age of 25 and 30, between 5 feet 5 and 5 feet 11 inches tall, with a thin to medium build.

Authorities said another woman was attacked and suffered non-life-threatening injuries Thursday morning a little more than two miles away from the senior center in the 3700 block of Pacific Avenue.

The widowed victim is 90 years old and authorities said the attack was similar in nature as well as the suspect description. But it was unclear if this incident is related, police said.

That woman's neighbor, Jana Brindzik, described the victim as "determined, strong and independent."

Brindzik walked out of her home about 7:15 a.m. to get her newspaper as noise from a nearby lawnmower drowned out sound. Minutes later, her elderly neighbor was trying to fend off the attacker and pressed her panic button.

"It just makes you sick to your stomach," Brindzik said of the incident.

The attacks are so disturbing to residents of the senior center that some are temporarily moving out.

Starr Jones, whose mother lives in the complex, said Thursday evening that she was "still taking stuff to my house for her."

"She will not stay here until they actually catch this guy," Jones said.

Anyone with more information is urged to call the Long Beach Police Department's sex crimes Detective J. Kearns at (562) 570-7368. Those wishing to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-8477.
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