The rape of a 16-year-old girl by a stranger who abducted her in the middle of the day while she was walking in Roseland — which follows an attempted kidnapping last week — has the community on edge, a social services group said Tuesday.
The girl was walking at 12:35 p.m. Monday in the 10900 block of South Michigan Avenue when a man drove up and began talking to her, Chicago police said. He then pulled her into his vehicle, police said.
The man showed her a blunt object and then drove her to an alley in the 11300 block of South Morgan Street, where he sexually assaulted and robbed her, police said.
The rape follows an attempted abduction last Wednesday, Nov. 7. At 9:40 a.m., a 15-year-old girl was walking to school when a black minivan pulled up and a male wearing a mask got out and ordered the girl to get into the van in the 400 block of West 111th Street, according to police. The girl ran to a Chicago Public Schools Safe Passage worker and the van drove off, police said.
A Chicago police spokesman said Tuesday the department is currently investigating the incidents but could not say if there is any relation between the attacks, which happened only blocks from Gwendolyn Brooks College Preparatory Academy. No arrests have been made in either case.
Rashaud Bell, development coordinator at IMPACT Family Center, a “human service organization” at 11300 S. Halsted St. in Roseland, said Tuesday that the youth his program works with are definitely concerned for their safety.
“It is an adjustment for them and they don’t quite understand why this is happening,” Bell said. “They feel even more unsafe because it is not only gun violence they have to fear but predatory violence against young girls.”
While his agency, which works with youth in several South Side communities, always takes precautions when sending students home after programs his center runs — including having parents accompany teens to bus stops or drive them home — the recent incidents have made officials even more diligent. IMPACT has been encouraging studentsto walk in groups and to make sure someone knows where they are at all times.
“We have been speaking with our students and giving them tips on how to stay safe while walking the streets,” Bell said.
The suspect in Monday’s incident was described as a black man in his late 30s with a slim build, short black hair, brown eyes and a medium complexion, police said. He was driving a white four-door vehicle, police said.
In the incident last week, police said the van was driven by a male and had tinted windows and a broken taillight on the driver’s side. One of the males involved was wearing a black neoprene face mask and a blue jumpsuit. The other was wearing a black ski mask and all black clothing, police said.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Area South detectives at (312) 747-8271.