LAS VEGAS -- A Cleveland Indians baseball cap is a critical clue that could crack a troubling case for Metro Police. A young man left the hat behind after he raped a 50-year-old woman.
"We are concerned. Is this a predator out there that's a violent predator that's going to continue on with this?" said Metro Police Lt. Rob Lundquist.
At around 2 a.m. April 15, the suspect began chasing that random woman near Vegas Drive and Tonopah Drive as she was walking home. She ran in fear, but he forced her into a desert area and raped her - leaving the baseball cap behind.
"Not only was this a violent act, but then we have a second occurrence with very similar circumstances," Lt. Lundquist said.
Police suspect the man struck again April 23, a little more than a mile away from the April 15th crime. The man attacked a 30-year-old woman walking near Rancho Drive and Bonanza Road, striking her in the head with an unknown object.
Police say he probably planned on sexually assaulting her, but when he tried to pull her into a desert area, she fought back. He fled the scene.
Luis Ramirez lives near the location of the first assault.
"That's sick man. That's sick," he said. "Pretty hard to know that somebody's going around doing that in the neighborhood, knowing there's a lot of kids."
Petya Ford walks in the area for exercise, but won't go out at night.
"It's horrible," she said. "I think that many women don't want to do it especially in this area, because I know that it's not the safest area here."
Both crimes are within a mile of the savage attack April 16 at the home of the Martinez family. Police say it's too early to tell if that unsolved double murder is connected to these vicious acts.
Many people are fed up with the wave of violence.
"We live in Sin City, but it doesn't have to be Sin City," said concerned resident Xavier Watson. "You've got some sycophants who don't need to be on the street."
The suspect is described as a black male, near his early 20's, between 5'5" and 5'8", 130 to 150lbs. Meanwhile, police urge people, especially women, not to walk alone at night.