Home invasions and sexual assaults appear connected

Five home invasion robberies and sexual assaults targeting Asian women appear to be connected, San Diego police said Friday.

The first robbery happened June 6, 2008, near San Diego State University, and the latest occurred March 4 in Carmel Valley, said San Diego police Capt. Jim Collins.

In each case, Asian women returning home were confronted by a man with a knife who demanded money from them, Collins said.

In four of the cases, the women were sexually assaulted or threatened with a sexual assault, he said.

The first robbery occurred last June 6 in the 6500 block of Montezuma Road, near San Diego State. The second occurred Nov. 7 in the University of California San Diego Mesa Housing area in the 9200 block of Regents Road. The third was Jan. 16 at a house in the 5100 block of Camino Playa De Oro in Tierrasanta, the fourth Feb. 10 in the 10500 block of Whispering Hills Lane, and the fifth March 4 in the 3700 block of Carmel View Road.

The suspect is a white or Hispanic man in his 20s or 30s, about 5 feet 8 inches with a thin to medium build.

Police advised residents to keep their doors locked and to pay attention to their surroundings as they return home. If they see anyone who appears to be following them or loitering around their homes, they should drive around the block, Collins said.

If the person is still there, they should drive away and call police, he said.

Anyone with information about the crimes was asked to call San Diego police at (619) 531-2299 or UCSD police at (619) 534-4359.