What to Know
- A young woman was ambushed in her home by a man who apparently followed her after an earlier encounter Tuesday, officials say
- He forced his way into her Maplewood home and sexually attacked her; she was treated at a hospital. The suspect is still at large
- Anyone with information is asked to contact the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide/Major Crimes Task Force at 1-877-TIPS-4EC
Authorities in a tight-knit New Jersey suburb say they are investigating a home ambush and sex attack of a young woman -- and they're urging residents to be vigilant until they have the vicious suspect in custody.
Few details were immediately provided Wednesday on the attack, which happened in Maplewood a day earlier. Police say the woman apparently encountered the man around 11:30 a.m. in town, and he followed her home.
Then he sexually attacked her.
It's not clear how much time elapsed between the first encounter and the home invasion, nor was it clear if any words were exchanged in that encounter.
The woman was treated at a hospital and released. Maplewood says it has stepped up police presence throughout the town. The investigation is ongoing.
"In this area, it's kind of shocking," said neighbor Hank Costa. "You don't really think this is going to happen."
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide/Major Crimes Task Force at 1-877-TIPS-4EC or 1-877-847-7432.