Local News

Teen sexually assaulted on Wake Forest trail

Posted May 27, 2014

— A 14-year-old boy was sexually assaulted Monday afternoon on a Wake Forest greenway, police said.

The boy said he was walking on the Sanford Creek Greenway at about 3:30 p.m. when a man approached him. After a brief conversation, the man forced the boy into the woods nearby and assaulted him, police said.

The assault occurred near Prairie Smoke Street and Sanford Creek Avenue.

"So many people use these greenways. So many people feel safe using these greenways. I use these greenways, and I have always felt safe. But that is the thing – people are just alarmed at this time," Wake Forest spokesman Bill Crabtree said.

The man is described as white, in his teens or early 20s, 6 feet to 6 feet 4 inches tall and between 160 and 170 pounds. He had patchy, dark facial hair and was wearing a black long-sleeve shirt, blue jeans and light-colored tennis shoes.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the Wake Forest Police Department Tip Line at 919-435-9610.

Meanwhile, police urged greenway users to use caution on the trails and offered the following safety tips:

  • Walk or ride with a friend or a group of people
  • Always be aware of your surroundings
  • Keep friends and family informed of your whereabouts
  • Carry a cellphone and call 911 if you see something suspicious or feel you are in danger
  • Don’t stop to talk with strangers asking for directions or other types of help, as this can be a ploy to get close for an attack
  • If grabbed, fight back and make as much noise as possible


This story is closed for comments.

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  • LovemyPirates May 28, 2014

    No one should ever walk on these trails alone - ever. When alone, no one is safe.

  • Lightfoot3 May 28, 2014

    "also for YOUR safety, exercising your 2nd amendment right is very helpful as well." - jgriffith3792

    Agree for adults, but juveniles don't have that open. The suggestion of wits, pepper spray, whistle, etc. are good.

    "Always be aware of your surroundings" - article

    Plus one!

    "Don’t stop to talk with strangers asking for directions or other types of help" - article

    While I understand the logic, this kind of goes against traditional Southern culture. But it's a sign of the times. I'll still talk to them, but I'm EXTRA cautious. Had a guy approach me in Walmart parking lot this morning, near Tryon & Kildaire. His clothes looked dirty. I studied the surroundings, body language, etc. Plus I was armed. He wanted to know where East Tryon road was. I told him he was on Tryon road. He said, "East!". I pointed to the rising sun, said that was east, and to just head that way. He looked confused and I saw him approaching someone else.

  • Forthe Newssite May 27, 2014

    also for YOUR safety, exercising your 2nd amendment right is very helpful as well.

    — Posted by jgriffith3792

    Kid is 14. Are you now suggesting 14year olds carry on a trail?

  • Anita Woody May 27, 2014

    View quoted thread

    The panacea of stupidity.

  • ecp1951 May 27, 2014

    sounds like concealed carry might come in handy on the greenway!

  • ncprr1 May 27, 2014

    View quoted thread

    You are correct that there is a mental health crisis in this country. You are wrong that socializing medical care will fix the problem. That will make the problem much worse. Less people will go into the healthcare profession and more people will try to take advantage of it. As it is now, in our entitlement society, there are so many people trying to "work the system" that the people who really need help can't get it.

  • trianglerelic May 27, 2014

    I would never suggest arming 14 year olds, but there is no law against Adults volunteering to patrol areas where kids play. Guns aren't for everyone. Not everyone has the skill or mental faculties to carry and use a firearm responsibly. Although a firearm in my waistband works for me, it may not work for 90% of the population. But Peperspray, and a stun gun, might work for many.
    It's Simply IMPOSSIBLE for Police to be in all places at all times... People that choose to believe that Police will be there to help and protect them, are the same people willing to become victims of crime. The Last time I called 911, it took 2 and 1/2 hours for a patrol car to show up, and I live in the city of Raleigh borders. 2 and 1/2 hours is enough time for someone to break in, rob you blind, take your life or worse, and be 3 counties away before the police show. I am my own first line of defense, my dogs are my second line, my Home Alarm is third, and calling the Police is 3 or 4th

  • Jim Thomas May 27, 2014

    Makes you wonder about some of the folks you see on the greenways...

  • justafella May 27, 2014

    Mace, pepper spray, a loud whistle, just a few items anyone under the age of eighteen could carry with them....I also hope the young Man gets the help to deal with this incident.

  • jgriffith3792 May 27, 2014

    View quoted thread

    As a general rule, no. I was simply adding another "safety tip" given all the recent incidents on walking trails in the area.

    With that said though, by age 14 I was an accomplished hunter, had passed the hunting safety class that was then taught in this state, had been around guns my whole life and knew how and WHEN to use a gun.

    In this day and age when so called "gun experts" don't know the difference between a "clip" or a "magazine", or the difference between an "assault" weapon or a semi-automatic. That, along with the gun phobia that has been pushed by the left that doesn't allow kids how to use and understand guns (except in video games), no, as a general rule I would not recommend all of today's 14 year old walk around armed.