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Ellicott City man charged in Columbia gropings

By Amanda Yeager, ayeager@tribune.com

3:11 PM EST, January 9, 2014

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An Ellicott City man has been charged in three separate groping incidents that took place over the last year, Howard County police said Thursday. 

Jeremy K. Ng, 26, of Whitworth Way, faces multiple counts of assault and sex offenses, which all took place in Columbia, police said. 

Ng was arrested Jan. 6 after allegedly grabbing a woman between her legs as she walked into her apartment in the 5000 block of Columbia Road. 

The woman screamed and her friend, an off-duty police officer who was inside the apartment, chased down the suspect and held him until officers arrived, according to police. 

After identifying the suspect as Ng, police looked at other incidents for similarities. 

Police tied Ng to another case in the parking lot of the Best Buy store in Columbia on May 23, where a man groped a victim under her skirt as she was getting into her car. Police reviewed security footage and were able to identify a man, who they believe to be Ng, following the victim through the store and into the parking lot. 

The victim also told police that she saw the man drive off in a white Dodge Ram pickup truck, which was captured on video. Officers found a truck matching that description at Ng's home, police said. 

Another case, from Jan. 10 of last year, took place in the parking lot at the Mall in Columbia, when another victim reported being groped in a similar way. Police said they have identified Ng as the suspect in that incident. 

Ng was charged with three counts each of second-degree assault and fourth-degree sex offense, police said. He was arrested three times between Jan. 6 and Jan. 8, as detectives put together details of each case. 

In each arrest, he was released on a $5,000 bond, according to police. 

Police said Ng's photo can't be released at this time because of the ongoing nature of the investigation, which might require other possible victims to identify him independently. 

The department is asking anyone with information or who might have been a victim in a similar incident to call 410-313-STOP.