Suspect accused of randomly pepper spraying couple on Cleveland’s west side, police say

CLEVELAND -- Cleveland police are investigating after a couple was randomly pepper sprayed while walking home.

It happened while the two were in the area of West 58th and West Clinton on May 11.  The couple was walking home from the Happy Dog near West 58th Street and Detroit Avenue. As they walked south on 58th, they noticed about five juveniles walking toward them.

According to detectives, the suspect pepper sprayed the victims as four other juveniles he was with began to cheer.

"We work at a school kind of close to here, so leaving school and stuff, I don't really ever think of stuff like that happening, around right here...I mean, I guess some areas around Cleveland, that could be a possibility," said another woman walking in the area.

"It happens in the city, but I don't hear much stuff like that happening," said a resident, who was walking his dog.

People who visit or live and work in the area said they enjoy it here, but say the incident is a reminder to take safety precautions everywhere.

"No matter where I am, I'm aware of my surroundings, I try not to be on my phone or things like that and be aware of where I am or make sure I have people with me if I'm walking around," one of the women said.

"We're feeling good about the place or we wouldn't be here. They just seem to have enough people around all the time that nobody really bothers anybody. You don't have a problem here. You don't see anything going on here, so that's very surprising," said a couple on their way to dinner.

The suspect was caught on surveillance cameras and was said to be wearing a red hoodie.

Anyone with information is asked to call Detective Janet Murphy at 216-623-5218 or email her at JMurphy@city.cleveland.oh.us

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