Rapist still on the loose in Florence

By Josh Ault  bio|e-mail

FLORENCE, AL (WAFF)  It has been almost 3 weeks since a Shoals woman was beaten and raped in her own home.  The victim was attacked in the middle of the day.  Police still are searching for the rapist.

The rape happened around noon on May 13th.   It happened near Simpson Street in North Florence.

The victim's husband found her unconscious on the floor when he returned from work.

Investigators released this description of the suspect:

-Male with dark skin

-About 5'11", in his 30s

-Clean-shaven with short brown hair

-He was wearing a gray or silver polo shirt with dark colored pants.

-He wore white athletic shoes, and had a stone stud earring in his right ear.

-The victims also noticed he had a foreign accent.

"You think to yourself," said Florence resident, Lyssa Presthee, who lives near where the rape happened, "That will never happen to me.  Then when it's staring you in the face, it's too late.  They need to catch him."

Presthee and her 12-year-old daughter moved to the neighborhood 6 months ago.  They are very nervous knowing the rapist is still on the loose.

"Having a daughter," explained Presthee, "I don't want her to go anywhere by herself, not unless it's paired up into teams and groups of kids walking down the road."

The Williams also live in the neighborhood.

"If you bring serious crime here," warned Roger Williams, "There is an eye that is looking out for you.  We will call the police."

"I try to watch out for my neighbors, myself," said Brenda Williams.

Both families say they are keeping the doors locked, and hoping this rapist will be caught soon.

Investigators say no one in the neighborhood saw the suspect flee.  The rapist should have some kind of injures from the attack, specifically on the face.

If you have any information on the rape, please call the Florence Police Department at 256-760-6500.

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