Beach Police Sgt. Steve Shulman said.
The man fled by the time police arrived, he said.
The alleged attacker is described as a man probably in his early
30s, about 5 feet, 10 inches tall and 165 pounds, with curly brown
hair and wearing jeans and a T-shirt.
"He has been seen in the area before, according to some of the
people we've talked to," Shulman said. "But this is the first
incident of this nature we've heard about in this area in the recent
Employees in neighboring office buildings expressed concern on
hearing news of the assault.
Jocelyn Delaney, who works in a doctor's office nearby, said she
believed the area was "relatively very low crime."
"I'm shocked because I never expected anything like this to happen
here," she said. "We work late hours in our office, and most of us
are women. I'm really concerned."
Delaney said she and her colleagues have never thought twice about
going to the parking lot by themselves after working hours.
"But it's going to be different from now on," she said.
There is also widespread fear in the area because the attacker is
still at large, said Edie Pool, who works with a lobbyist across the
street from the building.
"Our managers are making us leave earlier than we used to," she
said. "We had a girl today who wanted to work late today to make up
some hours, but our manager told her she had to leave early."
Shulman said area employees, especially women, must remain on
"They should work in teams and need to know who is authorized to
work in their building," he said. "They should also be more watchful
about who they let into the building and propping doors open."
Anyone with information about Tuesday night's incident is asked to
call Newport Beach Police detectives at (949) 644-3790.
* DEEPA BHARATH covers public safety and courts. She may be
reached at (949) 574-4226 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.