Man accused of assaulting woman after helping her with groceries

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Posted at 3:31 PM, Feb 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-19 22:16:33-05

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Amanda Ries admits Wednesday's trip to her local grocery store left her feeling uneasy.

“To have something like that happen in broad daylight, it put me on edge to come here today,” Ries told News 3.

She’s on edge to the point that she nearly brought her gun to the Providence Square Shopping Center.

“My thing is: If something was to happen like that to me, then I could have my protection,” she explained to News 3 reporter Brian Hill.

That need for protection comes after learning that police said a man allegedly assaulted someone outside the Kroger on Providence and Kempsville Roads.

Investigators said he offered to carry a woman’s groceries. Then in the parking lot, investigators said, he grabbed her and started kissing her face.

“I would have probably accepted the help and been in the same situation. It’s scary,” Ries mentioned.

According to the police report, it happened last month around 2:30 p.m. Customers who spoke to News 3 said knowing this incident happened weeks ago - and that no one has been arrested - makes this even more concerning.

“Not so much worried about myself, but my family - yeah, making them aware of it,” Donald Dackey, a regular at the store, said.

Ries told us she plans to be more vigilant.

“I won’t be as nose-to-my-phone,” she said.

Detectives said the man also tried to expose himself to the victim, but ended up just walking away.

“It doesn’t surprise me in today’s day and age,” customer Stephen Murray said. “People are crazy. That’s what they do.”

If you know who the man is, call the Crime Line at 1-888-LOCK-U-UP (1-888-562-5887).