A man who grabbed and tried to abduct a woman from a bus stop had said she was ‘‘very beautiful’’ and that he wanted to be her boyfriend.
The 29-year-old victim, Susan, said she had been left shaken and scared to use public transport or trust others after the terrifying abduction attempt in Melbourne’s north last month.
Attempted abduction in Campbellfield
Police search for a man who attempted to abduct a woman from a Campbellfield bus stop on the evening of Thursday, February 20.
Susan, who did not want her surname used, was waiting for a bus on Mahoneys Road in Campbellfield, about 10pm on Thursday, February 20, when a white-coloured Toyota Camry approached and the driver wound down his window halfway.
The man said his name was John, and offered her a ride.
‘‘I said ‘No, I’m fine. I’ll catch the bus’,’’ Susan said.
‘‘You don’t take lifts from strangers – that’s the number-one rule from your parents. But he kept insisting.
‘‘He was saying ‘you’re beautiful ... I want you to be my girlfriend’, all the normal pick-up lines that men use.
‘‘He wasn’t happy and he got quite angry.’’
Police said the man got out of his car and opened the passenger-side door after she refused his advances.
He grabbed her arm forcefully with both hands, while Susan fought him off, and he eventually drove away.
‘‘If it wasn’t for the pole I had my foot against, I don’t know if I’d be here today,’’ she said.
‘‘Who knows what he could do to me – rape me, hurt, me, try to kill me ... I just thought about my family, how they would feel if something happened to me.’’
Susan said she wanted to speak out about her ordeal to help find him and stop him from abducting anyone else.
‘‘It could happen to someone younger than me, your daughters, your sisters – it could be anybody.’’
Constable Steve Willer, of the transit crime investigation unit, said the attack was ‘‘shocking’’.
‘‘Susan is very lucky,’’ he said. ‘‘Obviously she is more physically capable than, for example, a teenager or a much younger female, so therefore she was able to use her strength.
‘‘We’re very lucky this male didn’t try to attack a much younger female.’’
The man is described as in his mid 30s, scruffy in appearance, unshaven with grey hair, solid build, tall with dirty hands and fingernails.
Susan told police that the man smelt of cleaning products such as detergent or degreaser. She said he spoke with a strong accent, possibly Lebanese or Arabic.
Police have released a computer-generated image of a man they wish to speak about the incident, as well as a picture of a Toyota similar to the one he was driving.
Anyone with information is asked to phone Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.