Police are looking for a man wanted in a series of violent purse snatchings in usually quiet New Jersey communities dating back to April.
Authorities believe the suspect has attacked women on at least five different occasions in the Freehold area, most recently on Sept. 8.
The suspect targets a woman walking or in a car alone late at night, sprays pepper spray or some sort of irritant in her face and tries to steal her purse or wallet, police say. He made off with purses in at least two of the cases.
In the attack Sept. 8, police said the suspect called out to a woman walking down an alleyway near the American Hotel on Main Street in Freehold Borough and sprayed something in her face, then tried to rob her. She managed to get away and called 911.
Three similar assaults were reported in Freehold Township, and another was reported in nearby Colts Neck.
In one of the Freehold Township cases, police say the suspect followed a woman in her car from a housing development to a neighborhood street. When she stopped her car, he approached her, told her he had a gun and stole her wallet. She told police he was driving a green minivan.
Authorities released a sketch of the suspect (above). Anyone with information about him is asked to call Freehold Borough, Freehold Township or Colts Neck police.
Danielle Elias contributed to this report. Follow Danielle Elias on Twitter @Danielle4NY