Editor’s Note: Police later arrested and charged a homeless woman with strangulation in the case. Investigators initially identified the suspect as a man. For the latest updates on this story, click here.
NEW YORK — Police launched a manhunt this week for a suspect who snuck up behind a teenager as she sat at an outdoor restaurant and placed her in a chokehold.
The NYPD on Friday released surveillance video of the chilling incident, which took place Monday evening at a sushi restaurant on Ditmars Boulevard, near 33rd Street, in Queens.
The 16-year-old victim was sitting at a restaurant table when the suspect walked up behind her and wrapped his arm around her neck, briefly obstructing her breathing before letting go, the video shows.
The man walked away but then approached the teen again before someone else appeared to intervene, the video shows. The suspect then fled the scene, police said.
The teen sustained pain, redness and swelling on her neck but was not taken to a hospital, according to the NYPD.
Police urged anyone who may recognize the suspect to contact Crime Stoppers.
NYPD Crime Stoppers offered a $3,500 reward for information that leads to an arrest.
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).