Bryant Tuff Facebook profile photo
Bryant Tuff Facebook profile photo

LOWELL -- Police are probing four stalking incidents during the past month where a man wearing black clothing and a black ski mask, follows women from a Dracut gym and in one case sexually assaulted a woman outside her Lowell home.

Bryant Tuff, 19, a former Dracut High football star, is charged with assault with intent to rape and assault and battery for allegedly sexually assaulting a woman in her 20s outside her Ennell Street home in Lowell on Feb. 26. Prosecutors have asked to hold Tuff without bail.

During a dangerousness hearing Friday in Lowell District Court, Lowell Police Lt. Detective Thomas Hultgren testified there have been four reports from women of a man with dark curly hair and wearing dark clothing who focuses on women, who have either left the gym or are in the vicinity of the gym. The incidents on Feb. 2, Feb. 25, Feb. 26, and March 5, usually occurred late at night.

In all the incidents, the man uses a car to follow the women to their destination, donning a dark ski mask, then approaches their cars after the women have parked. In three of the instances, the women locked their doors and called for help when the man approached their vehicles.

One of the stalker's victims identified Tuff from school, where he was a Division 2 Merrimack Valley Conference all-star in 2012. He was part of the crowd she hung around with in school.

One person was able to identify a car the stalker was driving as a silver Toyota, and a license plate which Hultgren testified was a rental car rented by Tuff's grandmother.


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Prosecutor Rachel Perlman said Lowell police allege that on Feb. 26, a Lowell woman left a Dracut gym, drove to her house in Lowell, parked across the street, then sat in her car texting. The woman saw a man approach her car so she locked her doors.

After waiting a while, the woman got out of her car, heard a sound and a man, wearing a bandanna over half his face, knocked her down, pulled her pants and underwear down, then grabbed her ankles and tried to drag her across the street, Hultgren testified. She fought off her attacker by hitting him with her lunch bag and poking him in the eye, Hultgren said.

When Tuff was arrested this week by Lowell police he was carrying a backpack with a black ski mask inside, boxing gloves, a couple of T-shirts, men's underwear, socks and toiletries.

The dangerousness hearing is scheduled to continue Friday afternoon.

Tuff has been arrested twice before, in 2012 on charges of assault and battery, defacing property and disturbing the peace, and in 2013 on charges of breaking and entering in the nighttime for a felony. The dispositions of those cases are unknown.

For more on this story see Saturday's Sun or visit http://www.lowellsun.com.