A Michigan teenager who was allegedly attacked by a stranger claiming he was conducting a social experiment gave a description to cops that led to his arrest—and imminent charges for two murders he is accused of committing the same week in two different states.
Aurora Dahl, 18, was out jogging near her home in Gaastra at around 6 a.m. on Aug. 1. She said she was alarmed to hear footsteps approaching behind her and, when she turned to look, she saw a man running towards her shouting that he was conducting a social experiment. He was holding what Dahl told WLUC looked like duct tape and mace. When he caught up with her, Dahl said, he attacked her, and she fought for her life.
At one point during the terrifying 10-minute ordeal, Dahl said the man was on top of her trying to strangle her. But she was able to unbalance her assailant, rolling him into a ditch and giving her a window to escape. Even after she broke free, the man kept trying to talk to her, she said. “It was really weird,” Dahl told the TV station. “He mentioned to me that I was bleeding. I said: ‘Obviously, you punched me.’” After running home, Dahl called the cops.
The teen gave a description of her attacker to a forensic sketch artist that authorities used to help with the hunt for the mystery man. Together with a description of his vehicle, the sketch proved instrumental in leading to the arrest of a man identified as Caleb Anderson. Dahl would later find out that Anderson, who had looked familiar to her when she turned to face him, used to ride the same bus as her when she was younger.
The 23-year-old alleged attacker, from Iron County, Michigan, was apprehended on August 3. And it turned out that the attack on Dahl wasn’t the only reason law enforcement was seeking Anderson. He was detained in Alabama, where he was wanted on charges of murder and arson. After being tried in Alabama, Anderson then faces extradition to Wisconsin where he’s wanted on a separate murder charge. Only after he’s been tried for the alleged slayings will Anderson be extradited back to Michigan to answer for what he’s accused of doing to Dahl.
“I was the only person that was lucky with an encounter with him; I made it out,” Dahl said. She added that even after Anderson’s arrest, she still feels jumpy when she hears footsteps behind her. “I get really scared when I hear that sort of stuff,” she told WLUC. “I am still in shock. Sometimes I get sad that the situation happened to me. I am glad it was me instead of someone who couldn’t get away.”
The new charges against Anderson are just the latest entries on his rap sheet. In 2019, he was convicted of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct and sentenced to 12 months in what was described as a “serial butt-grabber” case, MLive reports. Anderson’s modus operandi was allegedly to run up behind women and grope them before fleeing.
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