After three reported assaults, fear of more attacks prompts
agencies to form task force
Albany Times Union (Albany, N.Y.)
Several area police agencies have formed a task force to track a
serial rapist they believe may be responsible for three separate
attacks in which women were sexually assaulted in their
The details of the attacks have been sketchy and police
will not say if the alleged victims have been able to provide
descriptions of the suspect. In the three incidents -- which took
place in Niskayuna on Dec. 12, Rotterdam on March 3 and Guilderland
on March 9 -- women were attacked at night after being confronted by
an intruder who forced his way into their homes.
In Niskayuna, police said their incident involved an "attempted
Police in Niskayuna refused to identify the area of town
where the victim was attacked. They said the incident took place
about 3:15 a.m. at the victim's apartment.
"At this point, we don't
feel like (releasing) any further information would be appropriate or
even beneficial," said Patrolman Dan McManus, a Niskayuna Police
In Rotterdam, the victim was attacked after she
confronted what police initially described as a "burglar." The
incident occurred on Rensselaer Avenue in the Coldbrook section of
town just before 1:30 a.m.
The woman told police she was awakened
by a noise and attacked as she confronted the man, who had broken in
through a door.
In the Guilderland case, a man forced his way into
a woman's apartment in the Woodlake Apartment complex at Church and
Schoolhouse roads about 7:30 p.m. March 19. The intruder knocked on
the woman's door twice, and when he heard the noise of the lock being
unlatched, he forced his way through the door, authorities
Guilderland Police Chief James R. Murley said authorities are
now seeking the public's help as they compare notes and grow
concerned another attack could be imminent. He also said the
incidents have enough similarities that police are moderately
confident they may be the work of a serial criminal.
subscribe to the crime classification manual, it's three or more with
a cooling off period in between," Murley said. "It's enough of an
alarm for me that we just felt it was prudent ... that information
gets out to the public."
Police issued bulletins on Wednesday
advising residents to be careful about opening their doors to
strangers and to call police if they notice anything
State Police investigators from the Major Crimes Unit
in Loudonville are assisting and the FBI may help develop a profile
of the suspect, authorities said.
State Police Lt. Timothy Munro
said agency investigators are helping the three departments run down
leads and pinpoint patterns in the three incidents that might hold
"We have some assets that we could lend toward this
investigation that assist the other agencies, and that's basically
what we're doing now," Munro said. "Some of that might simply be
organizational techniques and things like that, as well as the
experience we have in similar cases."