Friends start fund to help woman who was assaulted along Interstate 35
CARLTON -- While a sketch is being circulated of the man suspected of physically and sexually assaulting a woman last week along Interstate 35 near Esko, friends of the woman have set up an online fundraising page to help the 23-year-old single m...
CARLTON - While a sketch is being circulated of the man suspected of physically and sexually assaulting a woman last week along Interstate 35 near Esko, friends of the woman have set up an online fundraising page to help the 23-year-old single mother and college student while she recuperates.
The site is seeking to raise $10,000 and had reached about $3,700 as of Wednesday night.
The friends said the woman is studying for a law enforcement career and they want to use the funds raised to pay bills while she recuperates from her injuries.
The fundraising page includes a statement from the woman who was assaulted:
“I am lucky enough to have a very supportive family that has always taught me the value of helping others, and to ‘fill my bucket’ by never passing up an opportunity to lend a helping hand. … On my way home from class … I noticed a truck pulled over on the side of the road needing assistance. I stopped to offer a helping hand, however, instead of being greeted by a stranded motorist, I was met by a young man with ill intentions. …
“I was physically and sexually assaulted on the side of the highway, at night, and left for dead. Well, I am here to say that he was wrong … he did not win … I won … I survived, and I am here to show you my strength and to show others that you can come out stronger in the end.”
The woman, who has not been named and whose hometown is not listed, reports on the page that her vehicle and phone are being held as evidence, contributing to her need for financial help. People can access the site at www.gofundme.com/lydiew .
The Carlton County Sheriff’s Office said the incident occurred between 10:05 and 11:05 p.m. Feb. 3 when a woman traveling north on I-35 stopped to assist a motorist who then allegedly raped and beat her.
The suspect is described as a white man in his late 20s to early 30s with a medium build, a shorter beard and short brown hair. He was wearing a black Carhartt hooded sweatshirt, blue jeans and black work boots.
The suspect vehicle is described as a 2003 Ford F-150 extended cab with black matte paint and larger black matte color wheels along with low-profile tires.
Anyone who may have witnessed any vehicles parked on the shoulder of I-35 between 10 and 11 p.m. on Feb. 3 or who may have any other information is asked to contact Carlton County dispatch at 218-384-9520.