Attempted sexual assault reported near University of Minnesota

Minneapolis police are investigating an attempted sexual assault that took place early Friday morning near the University of Minnesota.

At about 6 a.m., officers responded to an attempted sexual assault and abduction near the 600 block of 8th Street Southeast, according to police. 

Authorities say the victim, a U of M student, was walking to the bus stop when the suspect passed her, turned and groped her, attempting to pull her into nearby bushes. The victim screamed and was able to get away while the suspect fled into the neighborhood.

No weapons were implied or observed. The victim describes the suspect as a man, about 5 feet 9 inches tall, wearing all black and smelling of cigarettes.

Officials say this type of incident is rare for the area and they will be putting extra patrols near the scene.

Police are distributing flyers in the area and knocking on doors to advise the public and share personal safety messaging. Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the Minneapolis Police Department at Crime Stoppers 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) and reference case number UM-2019-037495.

The University offers a variety of services and resources for students on the Twin Cities campus, including:

Campus Escort Service: This service is available 24/7 by calling 612-624-WALK. You can learn more about it in the link above. There are additional pedestrian safety tips here.

Gopher Chauffeur: This is a service that offers safe rides home to Twin Cities students. Learn more in the link above. There's additional transportation safety information here.

Public Safety: This website provides additional information about public safety on the Twin Cities campus.