A woman escaped an attempted kidnapping near Chicago's West Loop in broad daylight on Sunday morning.
The woman was walking southbound on the sidewalk on the 200 block of S. Sangamon Street around 8:45 a.m. when the offender "approached her, grabbed both of her arms and attempted to pull her inside a maroon Dodge Plymouth minivan," according to a press release from the Chicago Police Department (CPD).
The woman screamed and fought off the offender while a passenger in a nearby Lyft vehicle "confronted the offender, who then fled in the minivan," CPD said.
Detectives were able to recover the minivan and are actively investigating the incident.
Residents of the area say a similar attempted kidapping occurred on the same block last week, according to local reports.
"If detectives establish a pattern or determine a link, they will update the Community Alert, which our office will disseminate at that time," CPD spokesperson Kellie Bartoli told Fox News Digital.
Liza Alvarez, who attends church in the area, told ABC 7 that the possible pattern of events "is discouraging."
"It's discouraging, especially for people like us, as women, to feel like, 'Can I be out at a certain time? Do I need to be with other people?' It feels very vulnerable," she said.
Julie Darling, with West Loop Community Organization, told ABC 7 that the incident is something "out of a nightmare" and that community members are "talking about banding together and walking together."
"It's really now gotten to the point where, if people aren't taking matters into their own hands from a self-awareness and self-protective measure, I think more and more, it's going to become — it's the crimes of opportunity," Darling told the outlet.
Police described the offender as a Black male in his 30s or 40s wearing a baggy, white sweatshirt with dark writing on the front and gray, baggy sweatpants.
CPD is reminding residents to be aware of their surroundings, "walk in pairs," call 911 to report suspicious activity, remember identifying details about offenders and "remain calm" if confronted by an offender.