DNA From West Hartford Case Does Not Match East Coast Rapes

Jogger assault west hartford

DNA evidence in the sexual assault of a jogger in West Hartford does not match DNA evidence from the man dubbed the “East Coast Rapist,” who has eluded authorities for 13 years.

Since just before 7 a.m. on Wednesday, police have been searching for the man who grabbed a female jogger on Fern Street from behind, pulled her into some bushes and raped her, police said.

The man, described as a tall, thin black man with a Caribbean accent, fled, police said.

Authorities found DNA evidence at the scene and have been trying to find the culprit, but no arrests have been made as of Friday afternoon, and there appears to be no connection with a rapist police believe is behind other attacks in Connecticut, Maryland, Virginia and Rhode Island.

Police said on Friday that the joggers route took her down Farmington Avenue before she reached Fern Street, and they are asking business owners to review surveillance video to see if it contains any leads in the case.

The woman, police said, was wearing earphones, and they are also asking runners to take precautions, including running in pairs and avoiding wearing earphones.

In addition to the police investigation, members of the community are taking action and have come together as a group calling itself "Take Back the Morning." On Friday morning, dozens of people gathered for a candlelight vigil at the corner of Prospect Avenue and Fern Street in West Hartford Friday. 

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