Rapist loose in the West End

HENRICO, VA (WWBT) – Police are looking for a man who raped a woman at a West End shopping center. We've talked with one woman who thinks she saw the suspect chasing the victim! It happened on the 8700 block of Schrader Road near Broad and Parham around 8:30 Wednesday night.

That witness hopes her description of what she saw will help police catch the suspect. That shopping plaza is popular with people in the neighborhood. It wasn't too difficult to find someone who likely saw a suspect wanted for raping a woman here the night before.

"I may have seen those people!" shouted witness, Amy McCaffrey.

McCaffrey was out for her daily walk Wednesday night just after 8:00 p.m. when she noticed something suspicious.

"There was two people that were walking, one was--the lady was being followed by a guy and the guy was trying to get her to come back four blocks," explained McCaffrey. "He said 'Just come back four blocks and I'll make it worth your while!"

Police tell us that the woman was in the area by the Coin Laundry when the suspect approached her and asked her to go home with him to have sex. When she said no, he picked her up and took her behind a nearby dumpster and raped her. The news that a rapist is on the loose came as a shock to some of the neighbors.

"She be wanting to go out to the laundromat at night. I be telling her don't go!" explained neighbor, Donald Jackson.

It's enough for them to think twice about their own safety.

"I'm not coming out at night!" said another neighbor.

"No, no. I wouldn't let my female family members come here by themselves," said neighbor, Herman Heard.

Police only have a vague description of the suspect except that he was wearing a jacket despite the heat.

"Was he wearing a jacket by any chance?" asked NBC12's Evrod Cassimy.

"He was wearing a jacket. It was like yellow or orange," said McCaffrey.

She plans to call police and tell them what she saw. And they hope you will too. If you saw anything suspicious near Schrader Road last night, call Henrico Police at 501-5000.

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