Fairfax County police are searching for a man who they say broke into a woman's home as she and her children slept and attacked her. The case appears strikingly similar to other break-ins in the area.
A masked man with a weapon broke into an apartment on Lewis Chapel Circle in Lorton early Saturday morning. The man slit the screen to a locked window on the first floor of an apartment around 6 a.m.
He threatened the young children who live there, then sexually assaulted their mother, the woman's husband said.
The husband, who wants to keep his identity private, was away at work at the time. He said his wife is scared, can't sleep at night and neither can the couple's children.
Neighbors in the complex off of Lewis Chapel Circle say they called police when they heard screaming.
"He was trying to escape... escape from the back window," the man said of the intruder. The children were not hurt.
Fairfax County police are looking at the similarities between this crime and several others in Woodbridge. The apartment complexes are almost identical. The intruder cut the window screens and bent the frames. Both a complex in Woodbridge and one in Fairfax county are located off I-95.
"We do not believe it was targeted attack. We believe that this would have been random," said Officer Shelley Broderick of Fairfax County police.
Those who live in the Lorton community say they are especially concerned because the crimes defy locks on doors and windows, and the masked attacker is breaking into homes where children are present.
"I have four kids, I hear about that, it's like 'oh my God,'" said neighbor Abibatun Kamara.
The victim's husband says he brought his family here from Afghanistan to escape danger. Now, after what happened, he is looking at moving his family back.
"I'm sure we cannot live anymore here. They have a very bad memory from living in this area," he said.
Fairfax County Police describe the suspect as a black man, 6 feet to 6 feet 3 inches tall, muscular build, wearing black clothing and a mask over his face.
In one of the Prince William County crimes last month, the intruder climbed on top of a woman while she slept, then attacked her. In a second crime, the attacker was scared out of a woman's apartment by a male friend.
Neighbors in the Lorton complex say there has been at least one similar attempted break-in near where Saturday's attack occurred.