Other shoppers in the store reportedly ran to the woman's aid before police officers arrived

By Helen Murphy
February 13, 2020 10:56 AM
Andrew Brooks Handley
Broward County Jail

A man was arrested in Plantation, Florida, over the weekend after he allegedly attempted to sexually assault a woman inside of a Walmart store, multiple outlets report.

An inmate log shows that Andrew Brooks Handley, 24, was arrested on Saturday and charged with attempted sexual battery and false imprisonment. He is now being held on a $60,000 bond.

An arrest report obtained by NBC Miami says that the incident occurred around 8:30 a.m. on Saturday morning, when Handley allegedly started whispering unintelligible things to the woman inside the store, before pinning her down on the floor of the Walmart and “forcefully spreading her legs open.”

According to The Sun-Sentinel, an employee who heard her screaming called 911, and other shoppers in the store ran to the woman’s aid while they waited for police officers to arrive.

WPLG reports that Handley allegedly told officers he “was trying to clean his pipes,” and “get something sweet” after becoming sexually aroused while seeing the woman holding a syrup bottle.

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“The defendant believed if he could control the victim’s head she would submit to his sexual urges,” the report read, according to NBC Miami. “The defendant acknowledged feelings of sexual urges, and tried to satiate those urges by forcefully subduing the victim and intended to commit sexual battery.”

The Plantation Police Department did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment. Attorney information for Handley was not immediately available.