Somerset County authorities announced an investigation into an assault that occurred on the path behind the Blessed Sacrament Church on Washington Valley Road at approximately 9:54 a.m. on Sunday, July 9, in Bridgewater Township.
According to Prosecutor McDonald, on July 9, at approximately 9:54 a.m., Bridgewater Township Police received a 9-1-1 call reporting a theft in progress behind Blessed Sacrament Church on Washington Valley Road in Bridgewater.
Police say upon arrival, officers met with an adult female victim, a Bridgewater resident, who reported being assaulted by an unknown male while walking the path behind the church.
Detectives from the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office Sex Crimes/Child Abuse Unit and Crime Scene Investigation Unit along with detectives from the Bridgewater Police Department responded to investigate.
According to authorities, the victim reported while walking the path behind the church, the suspect came up behind her and placed his hands over her eyes and mouth. The victim began to struggle with the suspect.
The victim and suspect fell to the ground, where the suspect took the victim’s cellular telephone and fled the area.
Officials say the victim chased after the suspect observing him enter a dark-colored SUV and leave the area.
The victim described the suspect as a light-skinned male, approximately 5’5 with an average build. The male was reported to be in his 30’s or 40’s wearing a button-down short-sleeve shirt, white t-shirt, shorts, and a hat.
According to authorities, a subsequent search of the area, detectives located and recovered the victim’s cellular telephone.
An ongoing investigation is being conducted by the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office and the Bridgewater Police Department.
The investigation has determined this to be an isolated incident limited to the area of the path behind the Blessed Sacrament Church and did not involve any services or parishioners of the church at the time of this incident.