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A New York City man with a long criminal history was arrested after attempting to rape a young woman on an Upper East Side subway platform yesterday at 11 a.m. while bystanders recorded.
The New York Police Department's Special Victims Division arrested Jose Reyes, 31 of the Bronx, for attempted rape. According to detectives, facial recognition exposed Reyes from a criminal mischief arrest earlier this year with footage matching the mugshot.
The attempted rape was recorded and shared on social media.
After his arrest, Reyes was awaiting arraignment in Manhattan Criminal Court on charges of attempted rape, assault, and harassment, the Daily Mail reported. He is scheduled to appear in court on September 4, and is awaiting that date at the Manhattan Detention Complex on a $75,000 bond.
He has at least 14 previous arrests, including three that took place in the subway system. However, none were sexual in nature, police officials stated. According to Fox News, Reyes has a prior record of robbery, grand larceny, petty larceny, assault of a police officer among other charges.
Reyes' 25-year-old victim was reportedly waiting for the F train around 11 a.m. on Saturday inside the Lexington Avenue and East 63 Street train station, the New York Post reported
A video captured by a witness showed the nearby crowd intervening. "Hey get off her!" Someone said as the group thwarted the attacker.
Reyes pressed his body weight on top of the woman, holding his hostage flailing on the platform floor. Dressed in a black long sleeve shirt, dark cargo pants, and brown shoes, Reyes then picked up his dropped sunglasses, and walked away annoyed while motioning to the victim left on the floor.
"This heinous and horrendous act was interrupted by a good Samaritan who observed Mr. Reyes; behavior and got him to cease his behavior while subsequently videotaping the incident," NYPD chief of detectives Rodney Harrison told reporters in a press conference.
The woman alleged that Reyes was "smoking some type of hookah and started making weird noises and laughing to himself," Harrison recounted.
He then gestured "in a masturbation motion toward her" as she tried to escape the scene, the top detective detailed.
"Mr. Reyes follows her, which resulted in him assaulting her, punching her, pushing her to the ground, climbing on top of her and attempting to spread her legs," Harrison continued. She suffered minor injuries but refused medical attention.
Filming the attack as evidence and screaming at the suspect "was helpful in scaring him away," Harrison acknowledged.
Police released the video a day later to help identify the would-be rapist. Three tips to the Crimestoppers hotline led patrol officers with the 23rd Precinct to Lexington Avenue and 105th Street in East Harlem, where Reyes was nabbed around 12:30 p.m. on Sunday afternoon.
Narcotics were in his possession, Harrison claimed, attributing the drugs potentially to Reyes' behavior.
Reyes confessed to the attempted rape, also alleging that he didn't know the victim.
The chief applauded the tipsters, calling them "very instrumental in apprehending our individual."
"When you hear about things like this happening in broad daylight, you really start to wonder about the fate of the city," Marcella Rogers, 34, of Flatbush, told the New York Post.