On Monday, a Yale graduate was out on a late night run along Yale Avenue when she noticed an unknown man next to a white SUV. He called to her, saying “come with me.” As she approached, the attacker displayed a long handgun, and then grabbed her and covered her mouth with his hand. She struggled and eventually broke free from her attacker’s hold. The man fled from the area.
According to a New Haven Police Department press release, the New Haven Police Department dispatched officers at 11:35 p.m. on Monday to investigate the reported assault near the Connecticut Tennis Center, located across from the Yale Bowl. The cops met the woman at her Westville home.
Yale Police Chief Ronnell Higgins sent a Yale alert notifying the community of the confrontation on Tuesday afternoon at 12:27 p.m. While New Haven Police Department Media Liaison David Hartman did not identify the woman in any way, Higgins’ alert confirmed that the woman was a Yale graduate.
The incident occurred at the intersection of Yale and Derby Avenues at 11:30 p.m., Higgins wrote.
The woman is unsure if the white SUV belonged to the attacker. She also believed the attacker’s weapon — a long handgun — may have been fake, wrote Hartman in the release.
Two residents near 1800 Chapel St. called 911 to report a woman screaming around the time of the incident, although neither caller reported seeing who had been screaming.
The victim was physically unharmed and was otherwise not assaulted or robbed, Hartman said in the release. The New Haven Police Department is investigating the incident.
At the end of the release, Hartman wrote tips for safe running, walking or bike-riding practices, including “[knowing] the neighborhood,” carrying a personal alarm such as a whistle, using only one earbud to listen to music and staying off the phone while running.
“Headlamps. Yes, I know they look dorky, but they also let cars and other pedestrians know where you are,” he wrote. “Also, light reflective colors are a must.”
He recommended that runners use a tracking app to share their location with others and also leave valuables and cash at home.
“In the unfortunate circumstance you’re attacked or grabbed, fight like your life depends on it! Kick him in the bollocks and yell at the top of your lungs! Then run like the wind and call 911 as soon as you’re in a safe place,” wrote Hartman.
The New Haven Police headquarters is located at 1 Union Ave.
Sammy Westfall | firstname.lastname@example.org