CRIME

Police look for serial burglar in Hyattsville

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Authorities say a woman woke up to find a masked man in her bedroom, who then beat her and then fled with her cell phone in Hyattsville. They think this break-in could be linked to almost a dozen others.

We understand these break-ins and assaults have been occurring more frequently in Hyattsville over the past week. Prince George’s County police believe the same man has attacked others before.

A team of police officers was canvassing the neighborhood Tuesday afternoon passing out fliers and warning female residents about the attacker.

Police believe the same man who broke into a woman’s home early Tuesday morning is responsible for at least nine other attacks. In most cases, police say the suspect targeted lower-level apartments occupied by single women. He entered through windows, sometimes unlocked. Police say most attacks occurred between 2 and 6 a.m.

Women in the neighborhood said the news were alarming to them and made them question how safe they were in their neighborhood.

Police are working with the FBI and have DNA evidence from a suspect.

The suspect who broke into a woman’s apartment at the Kirkwood Apartments complex in the 2600 block of Nicholson Street around 3:30 a.m. Tuesday is described as a black male, with a dark complexion and slim build. He is between 18 and 30 years old, and was wearing a black and blue waist length, collard jacket, a white shirt and black leather gloves. Police say he also wore a black mask, revealing only his eyes.

The intruder got into the home through an unlocked kitchen window. Police say he used the ledges to climb up.

Once inside woman’s room, the suspect demanded money and began beating her as she tried to fight him off. She was struck in the face multiple times and choked before the suspect got away with her cell phone, authorities said.

“We really didn't know what was happening,” said Patrick Smith, who lives above the victim and heard the incident. “All hours of the morning. Didn't think anything of it."

Anyone with information about this case is asked to call police at 301-985-5060.

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