San Diego

Police Reviewing Possible Surveillance, Tips, After Student Sexually Assaulted in Broad Daylight

Police are following up on tips and reviewing any possible surveillance footage after a student was sexually assaulting in a California State University San Marcos (CSUSM) parking lot in broad daylight Tuesday.

The incident happened at approximately 11 a.m. Tuesday in Lot B on campus, according to an advisory sent to students. The University Police Department is investigating the rape. 

The suspect and victim met on a popular college student app, said Margaret Chantung, Interim Associate Vice President for Communications. The app had anonymity features, Chantung said, and the app does not have photos.

After meeting on campus, the suspect drove the victim to Lot B, where he raped her, officials said. 

The suspect then drove the victim back to Craven Circle, where he let her go. The victim notified University police shortly after. 

Chantung told NBC 7 that officials believe this was a targeted sexual assault because of previous social media contact, though it is too early to say if the suspect would use the application to target other female students. 

“We do want the students to be aware not to meet up with people they do not know off of a social media app,” Chantung said.

The suspect is described as a 25- to 30-year-old man who was wearing his hair in a ponytail; his hair was shaved on the sides of his head. He was last seen wearing a dark blue t-shirt with red letters and dark gray pants.

Police are in the process of reviewing surveillance. They received tops overnight and authorities are working to follow up on those tips. However, police have no strong leads so they cannot release sketches of a possible suspect yet. 

“The investigation is just beginning,” Chantung said. “So evidence is very preliminary.”

The car involved in the incident was described as a four-door, older, white Honda. 

University police are asking anyone with information to call them at (760) 750-4567, or use the University’s SAFE hotline at (760) 750-SAFE. If you wish to remain anonymous, call Crime Stoppers at (888) 580-8477.

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