Police sketches of suspects

Two women were raped and robbed last night in south Williamsburg. The two 27 year-old women were going back home from an art gallery and were unlocking the door to an apartment building when two men shoved them inside. An hour later, after assaulting, robbing, and threatening them, the men demanded to be taken to the car of one of the victims. One of the women managed to break free, scream and get help, which, NYPD Special Victims Unit Inspector Susan Morley said, "could have possibly saved both their lives."

The police are conducting a manhunt for the two suspects: One is described as a Hispanic male, 25-30 years old, 5'5'-5'6", 130 pounds, with distinctive tattoos (a "cross embedded in a diamond-shaped pattern" on the right chest and the other of an animal near the groin); the other suspect, also a Hispanic male, is described as 23-26 years old, 5'7"-5'8", possibly wearing a do-rag. Details about the location of the attack and art gallery are being withheld.

The NYPD is asking anyone with information about the suspects to call 1-800-577-TIPS.

While we all feel relatively safe, please remain alert and aware. For more information about self-defense, take a look at the American Women's Self-Defense Association database of instructors as well as the options that come up for NYC self defense classes, via Yahoo. Learning how to defend yourself and, better yet, staying alert and hopefully out of dangerous situations is a good idea for both women AND men.