MESQUITE (CBSDFW.COM) – Keep the calls coming. That’s the message from Mesquite police today as they investigate a daytime sexual assault near Poteet High School.
According to Mesquite police, the victim was walking in the morning cold Monday, before accepting a ride from a stranger.
Although neither police nor school officials would say whether the victim was a student, it’s enough to make parents panic.
“Over and over and over again. Never do that…never ever do that!,” said an emphatic Eric Brown about the ‘stranger danger’ messages passed along to his children. “It just bothers me. I’m not happy about it. I’m not happy about it.”
“I guess at my age, I know better,” added a mother of a young daughter identified only as Alexis, “even at that age I knew better.” She also adds that the attack is a frightening reminder that everyone should be wary in even small communities.
Police tell us that the woman was released about a block from Poteet High school following the sexual assault. The shock and anger for many, followed quickly by compassion for the victim.
“Is she alright?” asked Merin Matthew. “I don’t know what she must be going through right now…be very careful.”
Mesquite police later released a picture of the suspect’s vehicle– a sparking clean, black Chrysler 300.
“We’re really hoping that with the area we’ve isolated and this vehicle description, that hopefully, maybe this person works or drives around that area and somebody will recognize this vehicle,” says Mesquite police Lt. Stephen Biggs. He also added a warning: “It’s very easy to let your guard down and think there’s plenty of people around what’s going to happen? But, we just don’t know who is out there, so getting in vehicles with strangers is a terrible idea.”
Others agree that while their community is generally safe, it’s important to remain aware.
“We’re so comfortable out here,” says Brown. “We drive the same streets every day. We wave at everybody, and people just go about their business. But, you’ve got to be more diligent because of the world we live in.”