BROOKLYN - Police are telling women in Bed-Stuy to be on the lookout for a man suspected of sexually assaulting a 17-year-old girl earlier this week.

Police say the man dragged the victim into a nearby building, where he robbed and then sodomized her. It happened at 4 a.m. Sunday near Fulton Ave. and Malcolm X Blvd., according to authorities.

The suspect is described as a black man in his 40s.

Some female Bed-Stuy residents say they?re surprised by the incident because the neighborhood has been improving. They say they?ve noticed the increased police presence and mounted security cameras but still plan to be more aware of their surroundings.

?This is really bad because there [are] a lot of young girls out here,? says Bed-Stuy resident Monica Bailey. ?They just need to let the community know so we can protect our kids.?

Police ask anyone with information to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS. All calls are confidential.