LOGAN SQUARE — A woman who posted her story on Reddit after fighting off a man who molested her while walking in Logan Square Monday morning is speaking out after her post made waves via social media.
The woman, whom DNAinfo Chicago is not identifying, said she wants to spread the word about what happened to her — both to warn people and encourage other victims who may feel too ashamed to come forward.
She scared off the attacker away in her "sheer panic," she said.
According to the police report filed after the attack, the 24-year-old was walking in the 2900 block of West Lyndale Street at 9:30 a.m. Monday. A man approached her from behind and sexually abused her.
She said she was walking to the Blue Line when the man, who had been walking on the opposite side of the "deserted street," crossed it to ask her for directions to Milwaukee Avenue.
After giving him directions to the nearby intersection, the man slowed down and began walking behind her, she said.
"He grabbed me, and started yanking on my dress … then he he lifted it and put his hand in my underwear," she recounted. "He pushed me really hard, and I didn't know what to do. It seemed like he wanted to force me to the ground. He was so aggressive, I couldn't believe it."
The woman turned around and yelled "What the f--- are you doing?"
The man then pushed her.
She pushed him back and yelled for help. That's when he fled, she said.
"My phone was dead, so I couldn't really do anything. There was nobody on Lyndale. I kinda froze and panicked. Then I filed a police report [at the nearby police station]," she said. "It happened so fast."
"And it could have been worse — he could have raped me," she said.
The victim has lived in Logan Square since March, but she said the experience hasn't changed her views on the neighborhood.
She posted her story on Reddit in an attempt to "make people feel comfortable coming forward."
"This person completely invaded my personal space and violated me," she said. "And if he did this he might do it again. If it's repeated behavior, now [police] can have it on record in case it gets worse — maybe it's something he's done before. I know a lot of people are assaulted, and they don't say anything, [but] it can happen to anyone."
The woman urged residents to be aware of their surroundings and personal space when walking alone. The Reddit post drew more than 200 comments in one day.
The attacker is described on the Reddit post as around 25 years old, possibly Hispanic, about 5-foot-6, "thin with dark black hair with a weird hairline/borderline bowl cut."
He was wearing a navy T-shirt and was on an old phone, possibly a Nokia, in the moments before the attack, she said.
"If I saw him again I would definitely recognize him, because of this creepy smile he gave me," she said. "I don't want to feel unsafe where I live. Because what if he lives in the area? I'm worried I might see him."
Detectives have issued a community alert and increased foot patrols in the area, according to Shakespeare Police District Capt. Marc Buslik.
For more neighborhood news, listen to DNAinfo Radio here: