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Jacksonville Beach police close in on attempted sexual battery suspects

Investigators released new images of four men allegedly connected to the violent crime

Jacksonville Beach police close in on attempted sexual battery suspects
Jacksonville Beach police close in on attempted sexual battery suspects

JACKSONVILLE BEACH, Fla. – Investigators released images of two suspects and two men wanted for questioning in connection to a violent attempted sexual battery that happened early Sunday morning outside of a Jacksonville Beach bar.

According to Jacksonville Beach Police, surveillance video from Tavern On 1st Street shows the four men walking among the crowd just before 2 a.m. on Sunday morning.

Shortly after the video was recorded, police said at least one of the men was involved in an attack on a woman outside of Lynch’s Irish Pub, a bar located a block away.

“As soon as I walked outside [the bar], a man came running at me at a very fast pace. He punched me in the face at least five times. I lost count as he continued to beat me, breaking my nose, giving me a black eye and cutting my face with his fists. He then pulled down my pants and told me if I was quiet, it would be quick,” the victim, who News4Jax is not identifying, wrote in a statement.

The man, who had long hair and was wearing a stripped shirt, then took her to the boardwalk near the Jacksonville Pier. The man in the long sleeve shirt watched it happen, according to the survivor. When she screamed, the men ran away, but they continued to go after other women in the area, she said.

"I am sharing what happened to me to protect other women so they do not have to survive a horrific attack like I did,” the victim wrote.

On Wednesday, investigators released distant surveillance video recorded near City Hall on 1st Ave. North that reportedly shows two of the suspects involved in the incident. In the video, the two men can be seen approaching three women in front of City Hall on 2 a.m., shortly after the attack happened. A few seconds later, two other men on the sidewalk approached the women near a Honda CR-Z and the suspects quickly walked away.

Investigators are requesting the public’s help to identify all four men seen in the images.

“It’s sad because I’ve been calling this place my home for a while and unfortunately those things have been coming up more times than not these days,” resident Derek Pasquarella said.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Jacksonville Beach Police Department at 904-270-1661 or tipline@jaxbchfl.net.

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Digital reporter who has lived in Jacksonville for more than 25 years and focuses on important local issues like education and the environment.