13-year-old Girl Sexually Assaulted at Queens Park Knifepoint, According to Police

A 13-year-old girl and a 13-year-old boy were dragged into a wooded section of a Queens park on Thursday afternoon by a man brandishing a “machete-style knife,” according to the police. There, the girl was sexually abused.

during approximately 3 p.m., the schoolmates were strolling through Flushing’s Kissena Park when a man approached them and insisted that they join him into the woods, according to Joseph Kenny, the chief of detectives for the Police Department, who made this announcement during a press conference on Friday.

Chief Kenny stated that the man urged the kids to “shut up” after showing them the knife when they objected.

Chief Kenny stated that the suspect bound the kids’ wrists with shoelaces in a remote section of the about 240-acre park before attacking the girl.

The suspect, according to the police, is a light-skinned male in his 20s with braces, a tattoo of a red-eyed bull or another horned animal on the left side of his chest, and a “heavy Spanish accent.” Chief Kenny stated that after giving the kids a 20-minute warning to stay put, he took their phones and fled.

The children’s acquaintance with the offender was not disclosed by the law enforcement authorities. Officers were searching the area for cameras on Friday morning in an effort to identify the man. A $10,000 prize was given by the Police Department for any information.

Department chief Jeffrey Maddrey described the attack as “a parent’s nightmare” during the press conference.

It is uncommon for strangers to attack anyone like this.

A study by RAINN, the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network, found that about 20 percent of rapes are perpetrated by a stranger to the victim. Sexual assault victims are usually known to the perpetrators. According to the network, in around 93% of cases of child sexual assault that are reported to law enforcement, the victims are aware of the perpetrators.

Police data shows that as of the beginning of June, there have been 694 rapes in New York City that have been reported to the authorities this year, up from 654 during the same period last year. Children made up about thirty percent of the victims. Additionally, there have been 12 reported rapes in the 109th Precinct, which covers Kissena Park, so far this year, compared to 17 during the same period in 2023.

The park was empty on Friday morning, save for the sound of police cars idling at its entrance on Colden Street and Juniper Avenue. A block and a half from the girl’s attack site, Rachel Carson Intermediate School had students loitering outside its doors.

While picking up her daughter Samara Gonzalez from school, Maria Sivira saw police helicopters and drones flying overhead.

Samara, an eighth-grader, said she usually went to the park after school, but on Friday, her mother opted to take her home early out of concern about her safety.

Speaking in Spanish for her mother, Samara stated, “She says it’s dangerous right now.”

Ms. Sivira went on to say that she had no idea how the parents of the attacked youngsters were feeling.

Samara remarked, “She feels scared being a parent.”

Vilma Burke, eighty-one, and her caregiver, Shazia Salam, were sitting on a bench near the soccer field in the park. Despite not living in the area, Ms. Salam, who has a 14-year-old son, claimed that kids were usually seen in the park. Friday felt different, she remarked.

She murmured, “I feel afraid.” “There’s something weird going on here.”

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