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Groping on Schuylkill River Trail raises concern, again

A woman walking with her boyfriend was assaulted by a group of juveniles on Sunday.

The Schuylkill Boardwalk connects Locust Street with South Street.M. Edlow for Visit Philadelphia

Police say a teen boy groped a woman on the Schuylkill River Trail in Philadelphia, just weeks after reports of similar incidents left police promising increased security at the prominent exercise spot.

The most recent incident occurred Sunday afternoon, when, as a 29-year-old woman who was walking with her boyfriend told police, a group of four juveniles on bicycles began harassing her. One of them, who appeared to be 13-years-old, reached out and groped her before riding off.

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In September, concern mounted about security at the park after a post on a Facebook group for Philadelphia runners raised concerns about safety and harassment.

Runners reported seeing joggers surrounded by juveniles on bikes, who in at least one case slapped a woman's rear.

Others commented with similar stories of juveniles on bikes popping wheelies and playing chicken with joggers and cyclists along the trail.

It’s unclear if the same juveniles were behind the harassment.

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The Philadelphia section of the trail follows the river along an old train line, and a recently-completed section of piers stretches out over the river. Trail access begins at South Street, where joggers can walk down a long ramp or stairs to get to it.

Police said that because the trail sits below street level in some areas, it gives the impression of seclusion, which has heightened safety concerns.

 

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