Cops are looking for a suspect who sexually assaulted two women in northern Manhattan over the summer.
According to police, at 12:01 a.m. on Aug. 17 a 35-year-old woman was sleeping inside Highbridge Park, near the southwest corner of West 181st St and Amsterdam Ave, when she was grabbed by an unknown man. He proceeded to restrain the victim, took off her clothes and sexually assaulted her.
The suspect took the victim’s battery charger before fleeing the scene on foot. The victim suffered scratches and bruising and was taken by paramedics to an area hospital in stable condition.
The suspect struck again on Aug. 26, this time near the vicinity of West 177 Street and Amsterdam Avenue in Highbridge Park. At 9:30 p.m., the suspect entered the park at the location with the female victim and once inside, the suspect pulled out a razor and demanded sex.
The suspect began to remove the victim’s clothes and a struggle ensued. The victim was able to break free from the suspect and fled the scene. The victim suffered a minor laceration to her hand but refused medical attention.
The NYPD released photos and video taken of the suspect, known as “Rafi,” walking in the vicinity of West 178 Street and Saint Nicholas Avenue following the Aug. 17 incident:
Rafi is described man between the ages of 40 and 50 years old, with a dark complexion and blotchy skin, missing front teeth, a medium build, brown eyes and short dark hair. He was last seen wearing a dark colored t-shirt, blue jeans, black sneakers and a black baseball cap.
Anyone with information in regard to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website at https://crimestoppers.