CLEVELAND – Police are investigating the alleged kidnapping and rape at gunpoint of two women who both said the assaults were recorded with a cell phone or video camera.
Last Tuesday, a 34-year-old Lakewood woman told police that she was forced at gunpoint into a vehicle while walking towards a bus stop near West 73rd and Schneider. According to the police report, it happened around 5:30 in the morning. A male suspect pulled over in a car, showed a gun and kidnapped the woman.
Police said the woman was driven to a dead end street at West 69th and Denison.
According to the victim, she was assaulted while the suspect used a phone or camera to record the incident. In the report, Cleveland police said, “[the] victim believes [the] suspect was filming the act. He kept telling her to ‘look at the light’ and ‘turn your head’. [The] victim says suspect was holding a phone or some type of camera.”
The next day, last Wednesday, a similar allegation was made by a 20-year-old woman on Whitmore Avenue in Cleveland.
She told police that she was approached by a man. The suspect was not in a vehicle, but he showed a gun and forced her into a field where she was assaulted. In this case, the suspect also recorded his attack using a cell phone or camera.
“They’ve been working to clean the streets up and make things safe for everybody but there’s more bad guys than police,” said Kathy Ellison, a Cleveland resident waiting for a bus near West 73rd and Schneider.
The crimes have left some Clevelanders shaken-up, including Kathy Ellison. “I think that people should, especially women, should pair-up and there’s safety in numbers.”
According to the police report, “[The] victim states [the] suspect told her he picks up women all the time near Lorain and shot one in the leg who didn’t listen.”
In the first incident, the victim said the suspect was driving an older model mid-sized gold-colored vehicle.
Both victims were treated and released after the incidents.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Cleveland Police Department.