Phoenix police searching for sex assault suspect who allegedly attacked woman along canal

Jogger attacked along Phoenix canal
Posted at 4:08 PM, Sep 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-15 12:53:25-04

PHOENIX — A former Arizona state senator and her surveillance video could be the key to catching whoever attacked a jogger along a Phoenix canal.

According to Phoenix police, a woman was jogging along a canal near Central and Dunlap avenues, east of Central Avenue around 6:30 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. when she was attacked and sexually assaulted.

Sex assualt Phoenix map

Fortunately, former State Senator Kate Brophy McGee’s home surveillance cameras were rolling at the time of the assault.

“We need to catch this guy. Whoever it is,” she told ABC15 during an exclusive interview.

Brophy McGee lives just behind the canal where the assault took place, “It is not usual, and it is quite alarming,” she added.

She’s lived in the neighborhood for 36 years and says this is the first time she has heard of something like this happening there.

“It’s a quiet neighborhood in north-central Phoenix. A lot of people don’t know we are here,” she said.

Brophy McGee tells ABC15 police knocked on her door, asking for her surveillance footage, a short while after the assault.

“And we have been cooperating with police to provide footage that may be of any assistance,” she assured.

She says this footage shows the moment the assault happened, and when the perpetrator pushed the victim into the canal and ran off.

“The victim was not able to get herself out of the canal. A bystander actually was able to assist her out of the canal. The male fled on foot. Again he’s described as a black male, 20 to 30 years old. He was wearing a black t-shirt with white stars on it, and blue jeans,” said Sergeant Ann Justus with the Phoenix Police Department.

Dominic Taguinod says he and his girlfriend walk the path often, with their dog Cora.

“It’s something that’s surprising to me and hopefully something that doesn't happen to us or someone else on this path,” said Taguinod.

Here’s what Sergeant Justus says you can do to keep yourself safe.

“People who target victims are looking for an attack that the victim isn't going to see coming. So being aware of your surroundings, making eye contact. If somebody does assault you, yell for help,” she added.

Officials say the victim is recovering at home.

They are now turning to the public for help. The department asks if anyone has any information, or surveillance video that could help, to come forward.

“We could not be more gratified with the immediate response of police and law enforcement to investigate this,” said Brophy McGee.