Woman claims she was robbed, sexually assaulted on East Side

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- A woman says she was walking home after hanging out with friends at the Bastille Days run, when she says she was robbed and sexually assaulted on Milwaukee's East Side.

"I definitely am not going to walk by myself after dark. I can`t. It feels really scary," Lindsay DesPlaines said.

DesPlaines was just a few blocks from her home when it happened.

"I was nervous, but there was no one around me. It seemed like an eerie night for some reason. I did notice a car that I think came from Downer and turned the corner. I noticed it was doing a U-turn or something. I don`t remember, but I texted my friend 'I'm a little bit nervous. Do you mind texting with me while I walk home?'" DesPlaines said.

She was looking down at her phone when she heard footsteps running up behind her.

"A young man seemingly just grabbed me from behind and asked me to give him everything.
I gave him everything, then he kind of tripped me and laid me down in the grass. I was wearing a running dress. He was feeling to make sure there was no other purse. I think he was looking for money," DesPlaines said.

DesPlaines says the man continued to fondle and assault her.

"He kind of hiked up my skirt, pulled my underwear to the side and felt around," DesPlaines said.

The suspect then ran, leaving DesPlaines hysterical.

"It's really violating. It changes your perspective. I was really scared at the time," DesPlaines said.

As DesPlaines called police, a similar incident happened, in which a 20-year-old woman was approached from behind, and an individual took her purse and cell phone, and pushed her to the ground.

To help warn others, DesPlaines is now helping circulate a warning email to the Lake Park Friends Community Group, and is sharing her story as a warning for other women.

"Just walk in partners and groups and really try to take care of each other," DesPlaines said.

DesPlaines went to the hospital and provided a DNA sample, hoping the evidence will help officials catch the suspect.