"My girlfriend heard someone scream," resident Antonio Mezquiriz said. "She woke me up. I came to the window. I heard someone yell, 'call the police, call 911.'"
Mezquiriz says it was around 2:30 a.m. Sunday when a woman was assaulted just a few feet from his house. He says he only saw her attacker from behind as he was running away, apparently scared off by neighbors opening their windows.
He was last seen running east on 23rd Street toward Valencia, "He was jogging, then he sprinted so there was no way I was gonna catch him," Mezquiriz said. "I thought for a moment, go get him, but he was gone."
The victim was walking home alone when the man attacked her. She emailed about her ordeal to neighborhood groups to raise awareness.
She wrote, "He went first for my eye socket with his thumb and put his other hand in my mouth to stifle my screams and slammed me down to the ground... Once I was down on the ground he straddled me pinning down my arms."
"This was clearly not a robbery especially since he was straddling on top of her," SFPD Officer Albie Esparza said. "Clearly the intent that she believes was that he was going to sexually assault her as nothing else was taken, nor mentioned."
The victim says she's a climber and describes herself as strong, which is why she was able to free one of her arms, fight back, and yell for help. Fortunately, she came out of it with only a few bruises and scratches, but police fear the man will attack again and inflict more injury.
Residents say they will be on the lookout, "I think it's good to be aware of it," resident Lindsey Travers said. "Be extra cautious of where you're going. Handle pepper spray. I guess just try and do your due diligence."
Police say the attacker is an Asian male, about 5 feet 9 inches tall, weighing approximately 160 pounds, and between 20 to 30 years old. He is also described as having a buzz cut and a slight beard.