Tyler police spokesman Don Martin said Alvin Dwain Jones, 55, was taken into custody shortly after the woman reported the incident.
Martin said the woman was taking her morning walk in the area of Old Bullard and Fair Lane about 6:30 a.m. when she was approached by a man later identified as Jones, who attempted to strike up a conversation with her.
“The female attempted to change her direction in order to separate herself from him. He attacked her,” Martin said.
He said Jones took the victim down to the ground and dragged her into a semi-wooded area of the neighborhood and attempted to sexually assault her, but the woman began fighting and screaming.
Martin said the woman’s reaction caused the man to run away.
“Officers confirmed this person as the suspect in the case,” Martin said.
While officers were arresting Jones, a neighbor approached police and told them he saw Jones in the area earlier.
“The man told officers he had spotted a black man earlier peeking in his window in the dark and when he confronted the man, later identified as Jones, the man left the area,” Martin said.
According to records, Jones sexually assaulted a 19-year-old woman in 1979 and was given 75 years in prison. He was paroled in 2005 and took up residence in Smith County. The Texas Department of Public Safety classification of sexual offenders shows Jones to be a high risk.
Martin said residents should always be aware of their surroundings and try to avoid walking or jogging alone.
“It would be better to walk or run with a partner so that you don’t make yourself an easy target,” he said. “In this case, her screaming really helped because it scared her attacker away.”