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Police release image of man sought in Esplanade attack

An image from a State Police security camera shows the man believed to be the assailant, police said.

Massachusetts State Police

An image from a State Police security camera shows the man believed to be the assailant, police said.

A woman was assaulted on the Esplanade shortly after midnight Friday morning by a man who matched the description of the suspect in another attack on a woman there in May, according to authorities.

A 22-year-old woman reported that a man riding a bicycle, after a brief verbal encounter, assaulted her shortly before 12:30 a.m. on the Esplanade near the Massachusetts Avenue bridge, according to a statement from Suffolk District Attorney Daniel F. Conley’s office.

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The woman sought help from another cyclist who called 911, according to the statement. State Police searched the area but could not find the suspect.

The victim described the suspect as a Hispanic male in his mid-20s to early 30s, about 5 feet 6 inches tall, with a mustache and short, dark hair.

The man generally fit the description given to police by a woman who was pushed to the ground by a man when she was walking in the Esplanade’s lagoon area at about 2:50 a.m. on May 24, the district attorney’s office said.

Massachusetts State Police

The assailant matched a description of a man wanted in an incident May 24.

“Whether a connection exists between these two incidents remains under investigation,” the statement said.

Several passersby intervened during the earlier attack, and the man ran away. The suspect in the May 24 assault was described as white or Hispanic, bald, and 5 feet 7 or 5 feet 8 inches tall.

State Police asked anyone with information on the case to contact them at 617-727-6780.

The district attorney’s office recommended that joggers, walkers, cyclists, and others stay alert and aware of their surroundings if they visit the Esplanade at night, and to travel in groups, if possible. People should avoid one-on-one contact with strangers, seek help if a stranger tries to isolate them, and never get into a car with a person they do not know.

The district attorney’s office also reminded the public that, while victims of any crime can call 911, survivors of sexual violence in Suffolk County may also call the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center’s 24-hour hotline at 800-841-8371. The center provides legal assistance, counseling, and other services to the victims of rape and sexual assault.

Martin Finucane of the Globe staff contributed to this report. John R. Ellement can be reached at ellement@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @JREbosglobe.
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