NYPD arrests illegal immigrant for allegedly molesting 7-year-old girl in airport hotel-turned-shelter

The man allegedly held a knife against one of the girls and molested her.

Hannah Nightingale Washington DC

A 34-year-old illegal immigrant is accused of molesting a 7-year-old girl at knifepoint in a Queens hotel that is housing illegal immigrants after luring the girl and her twin sister to his room.

Police sources told the New York Post that the girls and their family are staying at the Hotel Mint JFK Airport in Far Rockaway. They were playing in the hallway around 9:30 p.m. on Wednesday when the man convinced the two girls to follow him to a second-story room.

The man allegedly held a knife against one of the girls and molested her.

When the girls’ mother knocked on the door, the man jumped out the window to escape. He later walked back into the building through the hotel lobby, where he was confronted by the girls’ older brother.

A fight ensued, with cops breaking up the brawl and arresting the man. Charges are still pending, and his name has not been released by police.

A neighbor of the hotel, 71-year-old Annette, described the conditions at the hotel as "lawlessness."

"It’s completely lawless," she said. "Clothes hanging out the windows, ruckus every night. Walking around in the rain with no shoes, barely [any] clothes. God help those poor children."

The hotel, which is sheltering illegal immigrants, is also accepting customer bookings, a worker told the outlet.

One family who traveled from the UK said the conditions at the hotel were appalling. They have been staying at the hotel for two weeks at $244 per night.

 "We booked it on Expedia and it just said JFK Airport Hotel, the Mint Hotel JFK Airport," Stuart Warburton, who is staying with his wife, Kim, and mother, Maureen, said.

"We thought it was an airport hotel! It is absolutely disgusting in there," he continued. "And every night between midnight and 1, you hear all these children screaming, and then the parents push them out into the hallways and lock the doors and they leave the kids out running around and screaming and going crazy unattended in the hallways all night."

"The conditions are terrible," he added. "I wouldn’t let my dog live here in these conditions."

One Venezuelan couple who has been housed at the hotel for the past three days, described the hotel conditions as "wild," and said they heard a commotion in the hallway on Wednesday.

“Last night there [was] shouting, fighting, outside … a man was shouting at another man in front of [the lobby] door but we [went] inside and locked the door,” the woman told The Post on Thursday, noting that there were “many children” staying there. She said she didn’t know the people involved.

Her husband said that the conditions at the hotel weren’t much of an improvement over the last shelter they had been staying at before they relocated due to the conditions at that location.

"It is wild here," the man said. "At the shelter before, there [was] trouble every night. We moved here because I complained about the shelter. It was not safe. I could not sleep. This is wild and there is trouble. I do not let [my wife] walk without me."

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