CRIME

Springfield groper: Video surveillance of suspect released (video)

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For the first time, police and the public are getting a look at the man believed to be the Springfield groper.

Fairfax County Police released surveillance footage related to a March 28 attack.

The video shows a man walking into the HomeGoods store at the Kingstowne Center. The suspect attacked a 31-year-old woman who was shopping inside the store at about 3 p.m. The man then fled the scene.

The Springfield groper is believed to have struck in the area at least 24 times.

Julia Shimkute of Alexandria has seen the video and says it only reminds her of the threat.

"It just makes me extremely uncomfortable knowing there is this man out there on the streets, and potentially, he can do anything," Shimkute said.

Police said the suspect was described as Hispanic, around 30 years of age. He worked a black jacket, light-colored pants and black hat, which is consistent to past sightings.

Lucy Caldwell with Fairfax Police says the suspect's face, clothing or stride might look familiar.

"We do hope someone will recognize this individual and a lot of times that is what will happen," Caldwell explained.

Anyone with information is urged to call police at 703-691-2131.

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