Police in Washington D.C. are looking for seven suspects who allegedly forced a man into a van at gunpoint and sexually assaulted him.
This is the second time a man has been forced into a vehicle and sexually assaulted in the nation’s capitol in less than a year, MyFox DC reports.
The victim, who has not been identified, was walking along 14th street in the Northwest portion of the District when one of the suspects forced him into the van on Friday. The man says he was kidnapped and sexually assaulted. He described one of the suspects as a 6-foot-1 Hispanic man in his twenties. The man was wearing orange shorts and gray sweatpants, police said.
“It represents a change in what’s going on out here on the streets that we have a group of people who are specifically looking to target, kidnap and sexually assault men. That is a very, very profound event and it’s a change in what we’re used to investigating,” said Delroy Burton, President of the D.C. Police Union.
“It changes the game as to who needs to be cautious — outside of the correctional facility setting — about sexual assault,” said Burton. “I think before men didn’t even think of the possibility — walking up and down the street — and had to be guarded like we teach women to be guarded, but now that is a possibility.”
The first incident of this nature occurred in December 2014, when a man walking in Southeast around 10 a.m. was kidnapped by a van full of four men with guns. Police say the suspects drove the victim to another location and raped him, MyFox DCreports.
Police are exploring motives that range from gang initiations, to new sexual predatory behavior.
Authorities are urging the public to call 202-727-9099 if you have any information about the crime.