A young woman was sexually assaulted on Friday night as she put her key into her apartment door on San Jose Avenue at 23rd Street. Although the suspect lifted up her dress and grabbed her backside, she said that “pure rage” took over and she managed to scare him off.
A neighbor heard the screams and called the police who responded quickly, she said. The suspect is still at large, but the neighbor’s security cameras caught the assailant cross the street and head toward the victim.
“The perpetrator was following me down San Jose Avenue and waiting to see where I live,” said Margot Kenney, a 27-year-old who was on her way home after an evening out with three friends. It was about 1 a.m. She had stopped at Los Shucos on 22nd Street near Bartlett to get a hotdog and then headed home.
“It is unclear how long he was following me,” she said.
“I did not see him or have any idea he was there until he was behind me lifting up my dress and grabbing my backside,” she said. “Pure rage took over.”
Kenney said she started yelling as loud as she could and the assailant took off on 23rd Avenue towards Guerrero.
Sofia Keck, the owner of Los Shucos, who happens to live next door to Kenney said that all of her windows were open because of the heat. Earlier in the evening Keck heard some young people outside on the street, but it sounded like they were just having a good time.
When she heard the screams at 1 a.m., she thought someone might be having a fight, but then she recognized her neighbor’s voice and shot downstairs.
She remembered hearing Kenney yell, “You should be ashamed of yourself.”
“She’s petite and she was yelling, completely defending herself, but when she saw me, she just broke down.”
Kenney said that when the incident occurred anger took over. She remembers calling the assailant a coward. “I went after him down the street.”
Keck said that when she got outside she could see Kenney on the corner.
Kenney, who has lived in the city nine years and on San Jose three years, said the suspect looked “like someone who could have been hanging out at the bars. He was apparently pretending to be on his cell phone, and what bothers me the most is how calmly and deliberately he walked to me.”
She decided to talk to the press, she said, because she’s fed up with the every day harassment of women on the street.
“The amount of attacks against women in the Mission is completely unacceptable,” she wrote in an e-mail. “The police told me that they know who the “troublemakers” in the neighborhood are, so why are they still able to target women and get away with it. I should be able to wear a dress and feel safe in my own neighborhood, in front of my own house.”