The Manatee County Sheriff's Office is searching for a man who reportedly attacked a 16-year-old girl as she was walking to the bus stop on Tuesday morning.
At approximately 6:05 a.m., the unknown suspect approached the teen near the corner of 20th St. E and 50th Ave. Dr. E in Bradenton.
The victim told deputies that the suspect grabbed her by her backpack, pulled her down to the ground and told her to take her pants off. He also tried to pull up her shirt.
“I tried to scream for help but he covered my mouth and he told me to shut up or he’d choke me and he told me to take off my pants or he’d choke me," said the victim.
The attacker stole the victim's cell phone and ran away as a car drove by.
As soon as the teen could get away, she ran home and called for help.
"I’m thinking if it wasn’t for that car he could have easily just killed me and got what he wanted," said the victim. "So, if it wasn’t for that car I could have died.”
Deputies say they searched the area for the attacker but they couldn't find him. He is described as a male, possibly Hispanic, approximately 25-years-old, 5'7" tall and skinny. He was wearing blue jeans and a dark t-shirt at the time of the attack.
The 16-year-old victim returned home with some dirt on her but was not injured in the incident.
If you have any information on this incident, please call Manatee County Sheriff's Office at 941-747-3011 or call Crime Stoppers at 866-634-TIPS.