MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Police are searching for a suspect who raped a 20-year-old University of Minnesota student as she cleared fresh snow off her car near campus.

Authorities say the woman was ambushed from behind and raped in a parking lot early Monday.

According to campus police, the attack happened in a residential lot about 12:45 a.m., about two blocks northwest of various university athletic buildings and facilities.

In a campus crime alert, university police say the man sneaked up behind the woman and sprayed a chemical irritant in her face. The man then forced the woman to the ground before fleeing down an alley.