Passers-by stop sexual assault in Tacoma after woman is hit and choked, police say

A woman was sexually assaulted outside her Hilltop home by an armed assailant as she was preparing to drive to work Wednesday, Tacoma Police said Thursday evening.

The victim had just left her home near South 9th Street and Martin Luther King Jr. way around 6 a.m. when a male she didn’t know hit her over her head with a handgun. The assailant then sexually assaulted the woman and tried to strangle her.

The woman screamed for help, which attracted the attention of two passers-by who in turn shouted at the suspect.

When the assailant released the woman she fled the scene in her vehicle and contacted police. The suspect fled on foot with the victim’s cell phone.

As of Thursday evening, a suspect had not yet been identified.

The suspect is described as a Black male in his 20s and is just over 6-feet-tall with a thick build, dreadlocks with an orange tint. He was wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt, gray sweatpants and Nike sliders.

Tacoma police detectives are asking witnesses and anyone who might have video surveillance of this incident to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.