While police are still investigating several sex crimes reported this week around the area, the Ithaca Police Department said Thursday that they have found no connection so far between the incidents.
The first report came from Ithaca police on Oct. 27, who said that they'd received reports of two forcible touching incidents that happened in the wee hours of the morning, on the 200 block of Stewart Avenue. That incident resulted in two victims, according to police, but the suspect disappeared before he was apprehended. He was described as a "white male in his mid-20’s with a prominent jawline, short blonde hair, a slender build, and was wearing a gray t-shirt."
On Oct. 29, two days after the initial news release was published in Ithaca, the Tompkins County Sheriff's Office published their own announcement, detailing two sex crime incidents that happened in October. The first was on Oct. 14, in the 2600 block of Danby Road near the Fingerlakes Trail. While that was first described as another forcible touching incident, it has since been released by the Tompkins County police that the female victim was forcibly raped during that incident. They also released details of a second occurrence on Oct. 28 on the Thayer Preserve Trail on Sand Bank Road, which they have classified as forcible touching. During both events, the suspect displayed a knife. Police said both occurred during the early evening. The suspect in these cases is described as "a white male, 20-30 years old, between 5'6" and 5'8" with a stocky build. At the time of the incident, the suspect was wearing dark clothing and a ski mask."
While county police said the latter two incidents might be related, an Ithaca Police Department spokesperson said all three incidents are not yet being grouped together.
"From what we have determined so far, there is no connection," said IPD public information officer Jamie Williamson.
Both agencies are still looking for help with their investigations, and the Tompkins County police said they have increased patrols in the area, effective until the suspect is apprehended.