Still no arrest in weekend rape

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The victims in this weekend’s attack met with Georgia Bureau of Investigation Forensic Artist Marla Lawson, of Newnan, who produced this sketch of the alleged perpetrator.

By ELIZABETH MELVILLE elizabeth@newnan.com The Coweta County Sheriff's Office is continuing to investigate a Saturday evening attack on a woman and her daughter. Investigators are seeking the public's help in the probe. The at-large suspect is wanted for rape, armed robbery, kidnapping and burglary. The incident happened around 10:30 p.m. Saturday at the Sawgrass Manor subdivision off Lora Smith Road, according to Major James Yarbrough.
Authorities said Wednesday they believe they have collected most of the evidence at the scene of the crime, according to Yarbrough. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation assisted the sheriff's office in the collection of DNA and other evidence. Yarbrough said that the sheriff's office is now petitioning the GBI to "fast-track" the evidence, given the circumstances. "We won't know if we have anything useful until it's analyzed by the crime lab," said Yarbrough. For example, all fingerprints must be compared with those of the victims before authorities will know if they've procured a possible suspect fingerprint. Yarbrough said Wednesday law enforcement officers have gone door to door around the Sawgrass Manor subdivision speaking with neighbors. They've also canvassed nearby woods for clues. The major said Coweta County has had no similar rape cases in the recent past. Authorities have contacted neighboring jurisdictions and federal agents to see if anyone has investigated crimes similar in nature to Saturday's attack in Coweta. "We're trying to put the word out and see if anybody has had anything similar to tie into this crime," said Yarbrough. While the sheriff's office is awaiting results from the crime lab, Yarbrough is urging the public to help them identify this perpetrator. "If anyone saw anything suspicious that evening in the area, please contact us," said Yarbrough. "They may not think much of it, but we'd sure like to hear about it." The victim in Saturday's attack -- a mother in her mid-50s -- had just returned from a trip with her 18-year-old daughter, according to Yarbrough. Inside their home, they were confronted by a man wielding a knife. The unknown assailant robbed the women of money then sexually assaulted the mother while the daughter was confined to another area of the home. The intruder fled the home and the women summoned police when they were sure it was safe. The victims told sheriff's officials they had never seen the attacker before. They described the perpetrator as a black male around 35 years of age who is approximately 5 feet, 8 inches and 180 pounds. The victims met with GBI Forensic Artist Marla Lawson of Newnan, who produced a sketch of the alleged perpetrator. If anyone believes they recognize the individual or may have information pertinent to the case, they are urged to contact the sheriff's office, 770-253-1502.

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