Man attacks Valley woman in busy parking lot

Posted at 9:27 PM, Mar 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-08 00:32:18-05

Neighbors living in a west Phoenix neighborhood are concerned after a woman was attacked over the weekend.

Police were called out to the Fry's Grocery store near 43rd Avenue and Cactus Saturday night just after 8 p.m. 

Investigators say the woman was in the southeast corner of the parking lot when she was grabbed by her attacker.

Authorities say she was dragged to a greenbelt just a few feet away from the parking lot. 

"When I came out of the grocery store I could see all of the police officers. I drove back to my home, and you could hear the helicopter and see them light up people's back yards. The officers told us to lock our doors," said Evelyn Soltys, who lives nearby.

The attacker had a kitchen knife on him and was holding it in one hand as he tried to take the victim's clothes off with the other. 

"It's alarming. This is a safe area. We are right by the police department. We never had any concerns. So it is alarming especially since he’s still out of the streets," said Soltys.

Police are looking for an African American man in this 50s. He was wearing black and white clothes at the time of the attack and had sores on his mouth. 

If you have any information, please call Phoenix police.