A teenager was molested at knifepoint by a man who broke into her family’s Costa Mesa home Wednesday and waited in their bathroom while they were at the mall, the victim’s father told NBC4.
"He tried to pull her pants down, and I think that the guy had a knife, and he pointed the knife into my daughter’s neck," said the father, who did not want to release his name to protect his family.
"She’s still traumatized because the guy tried to pull her pants down and he tried to sexually molest her."
The attack happened Wednesday at about 9:30 p.m. in the 900 block of Valencia Street, according to the Costa Mesa Police Department.
It went on for nearly 20 minutes, the 18-year-old victim’s father said.
Police believe the attacker may have entered the family’s apartment through an unlocked window and waited for them to return. When the 18-year-old victim went into the bathroom, the man – armed with a "small knife" – turned off the lights and warned the woman not to yell for help, police said.
The victim described her attacker as a black male in his 20s, between 5 feet 5 inches and 5 feet 9 inches tall with a thin build. He was wearing a hooded shirt and a bandana partially covered his face during the assault, she told investigators.
About four hours after the attack, witnesses spotted a man matching that description in an alley near Mission and La Salle. When the man saw police, he ran toward a flood control channel north of Mission Drive, authorities said.
Police believe the same man may have tried to sexually assault a 32-year-old woman on Jan. 27 just blocks away from where the teen was attacked.
In that incident, a man entered the woman’s apartment in the 900 block of Valencia Street through an unlocked sliding glass door about 1 a.m. He was scared off by the woman, police said.
Anyone with information about either attack is asked to call 714-754-5252.