• Screaming woman scares away man hiding in back seat

    Updated:

    TACOMA, Wash. - A robber who got into the back seat of a woman’s car while she was in a Tacoma grocery store was scared away by the victim’s frantic screams.

     On Thursday at 9:45 p.m., a man asked a woman in the parking lot of the Safeway at 1624 72nd St. E. for a light for his cigarette.

     Police said after the woman went into the store, he got into her vehicle and hid in the back seat.  When the woman returned and drove on to Portland Avenue, the man climbed into the front seat. 

     When the woman stopped in the middle of the street and began screaming, the man jumped out, taking the victim’s purse with him, and ran toward Champions Center.

    Police believe the man was going to sexually assault the woman but ran when she started screaming.

    The robber is described as black, 20 to 30 years old, 6 feet tall with a slender build.  He was wearing a black jacket with a hood, a black skull cap or do-rag, long gray shirt, black nylon sweat pants with a unique thin stripe and white running shoes with either blue or green trim.  He was wearing a watch on his right wrist and carrying a cigarette in his right hand. 

     Police said the man entered the parking lot on foot, likely lives in the area of 72nd Street East and Portland Avenue, and uses public transportation. 

     The victim said she thought a bag he was carrying contained clothing.

     Anyone who recognizes the man in the surveillance photos is asked to call the Tacoma Police Department at 253-591-5968.  Police said anyone who sees the man should use caution and call 911. 

    See surveillance photos of the suspect here.

    Want to talk about the news of the day? Watch free streaming video on the KIRO 7 mobile app and iPad app, and join us here on Facebook.

    Next Up: