Man wanted for 2 sex assaults inside Highbridge Park in Manhattan: NYPD

Manhattan
Highbridge Park sex assaults suspect

Police are looking for this man in connection with two sexual assaults inside Highbridge Park in Upper Manhattan in August 2021. (credit: NYPD)

MANHATTAN, N.Y. — A man sexually assaulted two women inside a Manhattan park over the summer, and the NYPD released a photo of the suspect on Saturday.

The incidents happened about a week apart inside Highbridge Park in Upper Manhattan, police said.

The man grabbed a 35-year-old woman who was sleeping inside the park, near West 181 Street and Amsterdam Avenue, just after midnight on Aug. 17, according to investigators. He restrained the woman, removed her clothes and sexually assaulted her, police said.

The suspect then stole a battery charger and fled the park, authorities said.

The woman was taken to a hospital for treatment of scratches and bruising.

Just over a week later, on Aug. 26, police said a woman and the same man entered the park together near West 177th Street and Amsterdam Avenue. Once inside, police said the man took out a razor blade and demanded sex. As the man began to remove the victim’s clothes, a struggle ensued and the woman was able to get away, authorities said. 

She suffered a minor cut to her hand but refused medical attention at the scene, according to police.

Police said the man is known as “Rafi.” They described him as about 40 to 50 years old with missing front teeth, brown eyes and short dark hair.

Submit tips to police by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), visiting crimestoppers.nypdonline.org, downloading the NYPD Crime Stoppers mobile app, or texting 274637 (CRIMES) then entering TIP577. Spanish-speaking callers are asked to dial 1-888-57-PISTA (74782).

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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