The NYPD has charged a man accused of attempting to rape a woman on an Upper East Side subway platform, the department said on Sunday.
The attack, which NYPD Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison decried as “heinous” and “horrible” during a press conference on Sunday, happened around 11 a.m. Saturday at the Lexington Av-63 Street Subway Station, police said.
Police released a disturbing video of the “brazen and brutal sexual assault” in an effort to locate the suspect, now identified as Bronx resident Jose Reyes, 31.
ARRESTED: The suspect in this case has been apprehended and the investigation by @NYPDDetectives continues as we move forward to prosecution- We continue to encourage anyone with information on this or any other crime to contact @NYPDTips https://t.co/sytZngDeaS
— NYPD Transit (@NYPDTransit) August 30, 2020
Harrison said Reyes was detained by 23rd Precinct officers just after noon on Sunday at the corner of Lexington Avenue and East 105th Street in East Harlem.
Detailing the crime, Harrison said the 25-year-old victim first noticed Reyes smoking “some type of hookah,” “making weird noises” and “laughing to himself.”
The victim got off the train and saw Reyes on the platform as he sexually gestured toward her, police said. In an effort to avoid him, she moved in a different direction, but police alleged that he followed her before “assaulting her, harassing her, pushing her to the ground, climbing on top of her and attempting to spread her legs,” Harrison said.
Police say the victim suffered minor injuries.
The video, taken by a witness, was provided to members of the NYPD’s facial recognition team, who were able to place his image in the department’s database — which Harrison said only matches faces to individuals who have had previous arrests — and were able to link him to a prior crime.
Harrison also credited three CrimeStoppers tips that were “very instrumental” in making arrest.
“We need the people’s help,” Harrison said on Sunday. “It’s important that everybody understands, in order for us to be successful, in order for us to stop the violence — we have to work together.”
Reyes has over a dozen prior arrests, according to authorities, including robbery, assault on an officer, grand larceny and other crimes.
The NYPD said Reyes now faces charges of rape, sexually motivated assault, assault and harassment.
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