More victims come forward of sexual assault suspect who offered ‘blessings’

Security image of man wanted in connection with several sexual assaults in North York. Toronto police handouts. Toronto police Handouts

Toronto Police say a man who sexually assaulted a woman in her apartment after offering her a ‘blessing’ and advising her she needed to be ‘cleansed’ of her husband may be involved in at least two other attacks in the same North York area.

Police released surveillance images of the man last week wanted in connection with the incident that took place May 23 in an apartment building near Bathurst Street and Steeles Avenue.

A 37-year-old woman was in the elevator when a man entered from the ground floor. The man and woman engaged in a conversation, when the man reportedly said the woman needed a “blessing.” Police said the man followed the woman to her apartment and advised she “needed to be cleansed of her ex-husband.”

In a news release today, police said two more complaints have been reported.

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On May 22 around 11:30 p.m., a 27-year-old woman was walking to her residence along York Hill Boulevard in Thornhill when a man approached her and asked if he could bless her. The victim refused and the man allegedly assaulted her before offering her another blessing. The police said the man then followed the woman to her home but was scared away by a barking dog.

In a similar incident on May 24 around 4:45 p.m., a 38-year-old woman was inside her residence in the Bathurst Street and Steeles Avenue area when a man knocked on her door and asked if he could give her a blessing.

The man then allegedly assaulted the woman inside the apartment.

The man is described as 6’0″, with a  long brown beard, long brown side curls and glasses. The man speaks Hebrew and English. At the time, he was wearing black shoes, black pants, a long black trench/dress coat, with a white-collared shirt underneath and a large brimmed hat.

Police are concerned there may be other victims.

Security camera footage of the man has been released.

Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 416-808-3200 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-TIPS (8477).


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