Boston Police are investigating a sexual assault at about 10:30 p.m. Sunday night, on the eve on St. Patrick’s Day, in the area of Hull and Salem Streets in Boston’s North End.

This is the second indecent assault in a month on women living in the North End within a few blocks of each other. On the night of Valentine’s Day, a woman reported a similar sexual assault on Unity Street. A man was arrested in that investigation, but prosecutors have raised questions regarding his identity as the attacker.

The sequence of events appear similar in both cases, but police are not saying if the two incidents are related.

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More details are shown in BPDNews.com release below, including a suspect description that is somewhat different than that given by the February victim.

Police Investigate an Indecent Assault in the North End

At about 10:30pm on Sunday, March 16, 2014, officers from District A-1 (Downtown) responded to a report of a sexual assault in the area of Salem and Hull Streets in the North End.

Upon arrival, detectives spoke with a female victim who reported that while entering her apartment foyer, a male suspect approached her from behind and indecently assaulted the victim. The victim further stated that the suspect then fled the area on foot towards Commercial Street.

Salem & Hull Streets, the location of the sexual assault on March 16, 2014 (Google Street View)

The victim described the suspect as a white male in his thirties, 5’10” to 6” tall, about 200lbs, with short brown/light brown hair, wearing a dark colored ¾ length coat with a zipper and dark colored jeans.

The Boston Police Department is actively investigating facts and circumstances surrounding this incident. Anyone with information is asked to call Sexual Assault Unit detectives at 617-343-4400.

Community members wishing to assist this investigation anonymously can do so by calling CrimeStoppers Tip Line at 1(800) 494-TIPS or by texting the word ‘TIP’ to CRIME (27463). The Boston Police Department will stringently guard and protect the identities of those wishing to remain anonymous.

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42 COMMENTS

  1. I wonder if the North End and E. Boston have a higher rate of this type of crime than other parts of the city? It seems you rarely hear about sexual assaults in JP, W.Roxbury, Mattapan, Dorchester, Charlestown or Roxbury.

    • No you don’t hear about sexual assaults from Mattapan, Roxbury, or Dorchester because that’s kid stuff for those neighborhoods. Instead, you hear about gun shots and people get gunned down in the middle of the street. By the way, the North End has a very small percentage of sexual assaults —

      • So…reporters aren’t reporting those types of crimes that happen in those neighborhoods? I find that hard to believe. News is news regardless where it happens, no?

        What about West Roxbury, Roslindale, Hyde Park and JP? Are sexual assaults being happening in those neighborhoods too?

    • Maybe you’d notice the reports about those crimes in other areas if you were as diligent reading their local blogs/papers. Based on how often I see your name on the comment section here I doubt you spend much time reading other neighborhoods “local news” section (not criticizing, just making an inference).

  2. I am saddened and disturbed to hear about yet ANOTHER such horrible crime taking place in our neighborhood…

    Please be aware of your surroundings. Have a whistle on your keychain to call attention to yourself. Hold your keys between your fingers as a means of self-defense.

    This may not be / sound like much, but these tips can help.

    I strongly urge you to attend our MONTHLY Public Safety Meetings, where the police can hopefully answer your questions and address our increasingly common concerns.

    Remember, as a true neighborhood, we are ALL in this TOGETHER.

    David Marx
    NEWNC Public Safety Committee Chair
    617.416.6131
    davidsmrx@gmail.com

    • @David Marx,
      I met you at the Self Defense Class a couple of weeks ago at the Nazzaro Center and sadly you and a few others couldn’t stay do to the Public Safety Meeting going on downstairs..
      Just to make one thing clear, the Police Officer that was running the class said NEVER use your keys!
      It will hurt you more than him. The whistle is to be used yes, but the best thing you can use is your fingers/fingernails! Go for his eyes!! If there is sand or anything you can blow in his eyes, do it!
      Poke your finger/fingers in his eyes and hurt him good. He’s instinct will be do bend over and hold his eyes and then you run for dear life and yell “FIRE”. Someone is bound to call 911!
      Please be careful everyone! This saddens me a lot.

      • Life long North Ender,with all due respect to the Police officer it wont be him who is attacked in a doorway or on a street woman should not rule anything out & use all necessary means that they have to fight off these animals who prey on them.

  3. The description doesnt sound all that different from the Valentine’s day assault. And, this most recent description seems to match the surveillance video a whole lot more than Ross Currier does.

  4. Good advice by Mr. Marx & may I add put away the smart phone remove any headphones & have your keys in your hand long before you get to your building so your not in the foyer fumbling thru your purse looking for them while someone sneaks up behind you& if someone grabs you jam those keys into his neck,eye or face.This was a very brazen act coming on the heels on the Valentine day assault which makes this guy extremely dangerous.

  5. When will prosecutors drop the charges against Ross Currier?
    I’d like to know, too, what evidence they had to justify the arrest aside from the victim’s haphazard ID.
    What a travesty.

    • If & when the charges are dropped, I hope it’s publicized just as much as his arrest. Can you imagine the trouble he’ll have if he ever tries to change jobs? (Assuming he’s innocent)

  6. These attacks have been going on for over 10 years, but the No. End women were
    allowed to go to our Sudbury Police Station, show an I.D. and a bill and had to
    pay $25. for a permit to carry Pepper Spray and I think it is a good idea to start
    this again. The guy from over 10 years ago managed to get away every time,
    and they tried to say he was from the Coast Guard Base, and today we still don’t
    know the facts.

    • The attacks have been going on for closer to 12 to fifteen years & the sad reality is that no one has ever been brought to justice.Remember the young man charged in the Valentine Day attack has not been convicted of anything & is presumed innocent until proved otherwise.

      • The point is Ross Currier should not have been arrested in the 1st place based on the little public info that is out there.
        I’d like to know what evidence prosecutors had besides the victim’s unreliabke ID.
        I don’t believe that there is any other evidence unless they swayed the judge to believe that grainy video image of an obviously heavier, shorter man could be Currier.
        I’d be outraged if this was my son falsely accused and arrested.
        He is innocent until proven otherwise, yes..
        But the damage to his reputation has been done and that is inexcusable.

        • I couldn’t agree more. Based on the ID made by the victim, was there really a need to pull him off a basketball court in handcuffs? Maybe they should have asked him to come down and answer some questions. Maybe ask his fiance to corroborate his alibi? I don’t know, I just feel like they wanted the headlines “North End attacker caught”

    • I agree with the pepper spray. I was turned down at that station and was told to go to headquarters near Ruggles. This is something I should be able to do locally.

      • The Police point out, from time to time, that hairspray can deter someone getting close to you. I carry a small can of it – always – and prefer this to pepper spray which has been known to blind people. How do I know that? I was at Berkeley when the National Guard was called in on campus during 1968. We fought tear gas every day, and ducked snipers on campus buildings. The women carried hairspray, always at the ready.

  7. I am in the process of trying to obtain more whistles from the Neighborhood Crime Watch Unit of the Boston Police Department.

    My plan is to have them made available at the front desk of The Nazzaro Center for those that want them.

    I will confirm here once this is all-set.

    Thanks.

    David Marx
    NEWNC Public Safety Committee Chair

      • I just emailed Sgt. Lema to see if there is any way people can get the permit for pepper spray (as well as the pepper spray itself) at our local A-1 police station, rather than having to trek all the way down to the Ruggles police headquarters.

        If there was ever an exception to be made for BPD’s policy of having city residents go to Ruggles for such a thing, rather than their local police station, surely this would be a well-justified one.

        -David Marx-
        NEWNC Public Safety Committee Chair

  8. David thank you so much for being on top of this. I think the politicians should be very
    instrumental in the access of Pepper Spray, I know for a fact it was available on
    Sudbury St. There is absolutely no reason why the No.End Residents should ever have to go
    to RUGGLES STATION, which is not the safest area or train station in the city.

    I know there must be paper work involved to register anyone who wants Pepper Spray, but
    guess what, it is too bad, it goes with the job. We don’t want to live in fear and we don’t
    want our Police to be bogged down with registrations, but this is not an “OPTION”, THIS
    IS A “NECESSITY. ”
    Go for it David, and don’t stop until we can have access for Pepper
    Spray thru registering at Sudbury Police Station.

  9. what exactly is a sexual assault? I mean did he rape her? Grab her ass or breasts? I mean I hear this all he time and if she was raped they’d say raped right? This is insane..

    • Gina, sexual assault is defined as an act against a person by threatening,coercing or forcing a person to engage in a non consensual sexual act.Very serious but you seem to be downplaying it!

    • Gina, When it is rape, the police will call it out as rape. Sexual assault is groping – in any or all the private areas of a body, or an ‘attempt’ to rape. These girls were not raped. If a woman is, she is taken to the hospital immediately to be checked out.

  10. Check “Doughboy”
    In revere they may be able to sell you pepper spray
    Or have a friend who is secretary,court officer or cop buy one for you in there with their badge

    Doughboy Police & Fire Supply
    428 American Legion Hwy, Revere, MA 02151
    (781) 289-3300

  11. To all of you ladies that are really concerned about protecting yourself, consider carrying
    WASP & HORNET SPRAY. I admit, unless you carry a “Large Purse or Duffle Bag”
    this will be inconvenient for most of you, but the Benefit of this spray is that it shoots
    out a 27 ft. Jet Spray, which means that you don’t have to allow the attacker to get that
    close to you to blind him. The can is equivalent to a Very Large can of Hairspray and is
    20 ounces (1 lb. 4 oz.) Spectracide is the name of the company that puts this out and can
    be purchased at Home Depot, and maybe True Value on Salem St. could possibly carry
    this, I don’t know. The cost was under $5.00.
    The Best Feature of all, it is Legal & you don’t need a Permit, and hopefully this will
    hold us over, until we get permits for Pepper Spray. What a way to live, but if you can
    save yourself from being attacked I guess we have no choice. How sad this Neighborhood
    had to end up like this, and this has been going on for over 12 years.
    I hope this information was helpful to those of you living in fear.

      • The bee-spray idea is preposterous. How about a Super-soaker 5000? In all seriousness this is a big problem, but lets use some common sense, I don’t think that involves arming the populous with Hardware Store insect killer.

  12. BOSGUY22 & GREG,

    Give me a break, the bottom line is that this works, I am not saying spraying people who look
    like attackers. This was highly recommended as a means of protection on a site 2-3 years
    ago, and it is easy for you guys to get cocky, but I don’t see either one of you coming up
    with any suggestions, and for those woman who are concerned and scared it is an option for them. I am
    not looking for your approval. It works, that’s all I know, and if it can give No. End
    women a sense of temporary protection that’s all that matters, not your opinions.
    Maybe you guys can get together & try it on each other, and let all the No. End Woman
    know if you give it your Seal of Approval.

  13. I’m not advising anyone to break the law, but you can purchase pepper spray on amazon without any permitting. I’m not sure what the fine would be if you got caught with it, though given the situation I kind of doubt they would enforce the fine. And if it prevents an attack, that fine may be money well spent. There are various sized bottles – some are small enough to fit on a keychain.

    http://www.amazon.com/SABRE-Police-Strength-Pepper-Spray/dp/B0041VOSHA/ref=sr_1_4?s=hunting-fishing&ie=UTF8&qid=1395269382&sr=1-4&keywords=pepper+spray

  14. Minor update on my previous post – It cannot be shipped to an address in Boston. You can purchase it and have it sent to an address outside the city though.

    • It is illegal to be shipped to any address in Massachusetts, not just Boston. You would have to have the pepper spray shipped outside the state. In which case you are better of just driving to New Hampshire and buying some anyway,s

      • You can buy bear spray in New Hampshire. Same stuff but it shoots 30 feet. This way you don’t even need to be near the POS.

  15. A few weeks I pointed out that in Boston a person can buy a syringe without a prescription but a woman or anyone else needs a firearm identification card to purchase pepper spray there is some legislation thats been proposed to lessen the requirements to buy pepper spray but unless people band together & pressure their state reps & senators the bill will stall & die while this guy & other perverts are still walking the streets waiting to strike again & he will its just a matter of time,

  16. mm,lets examine the evidence or lack of evidence in this case. We have a grainy video of poor quality showing a person of interest who fits the description & is wearing the clothing that the 1st victim identified.Now unless this person in the video lives under a rock he knows & has seen the video at least once but he has never come forward to eliminate himself as a suspect [which tells me that he is the attacker] NOT THE PERSON WHO HAS BEEN CHARGED.The video shows a person casually walking but when he turns the corner he breaks into a sprint.Unfortunately his route .ends there & is not picked up because there obviously are no other surveillance cameras in that area & we cant pick up where he ran or if he got into a vehicle which could been huge in identifying him.In the 2nd attack there apparently isn’t any video therefore we cant even determine if the same person committed both crimes.Cameras are everywhere but here & could assist in the mayhem on Hanover St & other streets & even identify the trash violators & the people who don’t pick up after their dogs.

    • Yes that seems like a great use of funds. Lets spend thousands of dollars to install camera’s and monitoring systems, them pay some one to watch these videos just to catch some trash violators and dog poop….do you have any idea the amount of fines you would have to give out just to cover your costs

  17. Do you have any idea how much money these landlords & business owners make & how much $$ that is wasted by the city & state. It took some college kids to replace the stolen fire boot when it should have been replaced the next day by the business community. & finally you cant put a price tag on safety concerns.

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