Bystanders held Queens rape suspect until police arrived: NYPD

Bystanders held Queens rape suspect until police arrived: NYPD

QUEENS, N.Y. (PIX11) — Bystanders recognized a man suspected of raping a 13-year-old in a Queens park and held him until police arrived, NYPD Assistant Chief of the Detectives Bureau Jason Savino told PIX11 News Tuesday morning.

The suspect was taken into custody near 108th Street and Waldron Street after a 911 tip, but he has not yet been charged, police said. People on the street recognized the suspect based on photos and sketches released by the NYPD, according to Savino.

Law enforcement sources said the suspect was badly beaten and was taken to the hospital for treatment.

Sketch released of suspect in rape of 13-year-old girl at Queens park

“Individuals felt very strongly, almost like they knew him, that they recognized him… and held him pending police arrival,” Savino said.

The hunt had been on since Thursday when the man allegedly approached a boy and girl, both 13, near Kissena Park near Colden Street and Kalmia Avenue with a large knife and forced them into the park, according to the NYPD. The suspect tied the children up with a shoelace before sexually assaulting the 13-year-old girl, police said. He then took their cellphones and told them to wait 20 minutes before leaving the area, authorities said.

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Police released a sketch of the suspected attacker and his tattoo shortly after, offering a $10,000 reward for tips that led to his arrest. The NYPD canvassed the area tirelessly over the weekend and, on Monday, released new surveillance images and video of the suspect.

“When it comes to our community, we have to work together,” Savino said. “This case at a case at a glance was as challenging as they come.”

Emily Rahhal is a digital reporter from Los Angeles who has covered New York City since 2023. She joined PIX11 in 2024. See more of her work here and follow her on Twitter here.

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