FORT WORTH, Texas - Fort Worth police need help to identify a person of interest who was in the area when a 13-year-old girl was assaulted on her way to the bus stop.
Sgt. Chris Britt said investigators feel confident a man seen in surveillance video from a nearby business was close enough to have possibly witnessed the crime last Thursday morning.
He’s described as a white male who is about 5 feet 8 inches to 5 feet 10 inches tall. He weighs about 200 pounds and has dark, medium-length hair. He also has a thin beard and mustache.
At the time he was wearing jeans, a gray shirt, black pullover sweater, dark baseball cap worn backward and he had a dark backpack. The backpack may have had a pattern or design on the right side.
Sgt. Britt said the man is just one person of interest who has not been identified. Investigators would just like to talk to him about what he saw.
The assault happened between 6:30 and 7 a.m. as a student at Internationally Newcomer Academy was walking from her home to a bus stop. She was approached by an unknown man across the street from Western Hills Elementary.
Police said the teen was able to get away from her attacker but was bleeding when the bus arrived. The bus driver called 911 and she was taken to the hospital in critical condition.
Investigators still have not been able to speak to her because of the extent of her injuries, Sgt. Britt said.
Members of the girl’s community in West Fort Worth are pitching in to help. Volunteers met with the Fort Worth Police Department Monday night to talk about the areas they will keep watch over in the mornings.
The volunteers will be wearing yellow shirts that say Restore Our Community. They won’t be armed but will have whistles and cellphones on them to quickly alert authorities if they see something suspicious.
They say students shouldn’t have to worry about whether it is safe to walk to school.
"These kids need to be safe, safe in our area. I also live about 10 minutes away from where this happened and that could have been my little sister, daughter, or anyone,” said Rosalind Mosby, a volunteer.
Police are also patrolling the area and investigators are working around the clock on the case
Anyone with tips should call 817-392-4430. Those who wish to remain anonymous can call CrimeStoppers at 817-469-TIPS.
Police are not concerned about any outstanding warrants a tipster may have, Sgt. Britt assured.