Two women were groped in Springfield within a half an hour of each other Wednesday afternoon, and detectives are looking into the possibility that they are the 16th and 17th victims of a serial groper, Fairfax County police officials said.

In the first of the Wednesday attacks, which took place at about 3:10 p.m., a 30-year-old woman was walking south on Dinwiddie Street near Dana Avenue when she was grabbed from behind and groped.

In the second assault, which took place roughly 25 minutes later, a 25-year-old woman was walking south on Backlick Road near the intersection with Cabin John Road when she felt someone grope her. Her assailant fled after she yelled, officials said.

The attacker in both incidents was described as an Hispanic male, about 5-feet-6. In Wednesday's first incident, the groper was described as having a neatly-trimmed beard and wearing a sweatshirt. In the second attack of the day, the groper was seen wearing a black jacket and blue jeans.

Police have not definitively linked the assaults, but they could be the 16th and 17th reported attacks committed by one man since September.

This is not the first time that two groping incidents have been reported within minutes of each other, officials said. On Nov. 1, a 23-year-old woman was groped at about 4 p.m. and a 42-year-old woman was groped about 30 minutes later.