The rapist, who struck while initial suspect William Giraldo of Bensonhurst was in police custody, has attempted a number of sexual assaults in recent weeks. In most cases, he would grab or grope a woman from behind.
Fortunately, during the most recent attempts, victims have managed to either alert neighbors with screams, scaring the suspect away and/or successfully fend off the attacker – who is described as small in stature.
News blog Gothamist is reporting that a group recently formed in Park Slope to prevent future attacks and raise awareness of a rapist that’s still on the loose, plans to hold a rally tonight near the sight of one of the attacks.
Safe Slope, a group formed last month, the “Take Back Our Streets” rally will begin by the Prospect Avenue R stop on 4th Avenue at 17th Street at 8 p.m., ending at the Detective Joseph Mayrose Park on 17th Street between 6th and 7th Avenues. Council Speaker Christine Quinn; Council Members Sara Gonzalez and Brad Lander are expected to join the rally, and at the park the Center for Anti-Violence Education will offer a mini self-defense demonstration. (You can also sign up for a series of free self-defense classes they are offering in collaboration with Council Members Sara Gonzalez and Brad Lander.)
The group is also launching a Safe Walk program in South Slope/Greenwood Heights/Windsor Terrace on Thursday through Sunday nights, between 8:00pm and 3:00am. Safe Walk volunteers will provide “pick-ups” at local establishments and subway stops and will provide “drop-offs” anywhere between 9th and 30th Streets and between 2nd and 8th Avenues in Brooklyn. The number to call if you want a Safe Walk volunteer to join you is T.B.A. And if you are interested in volunteering, the group urges you to email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
One of the rapist’s attacks from earlier this year touched off an internal affairs investigation into alleged inaction by police.
Similarly, a woman who says she may have had a run-in with the rapist, described receiving a rude and dismissive response, while trying to report the encounter to law enforcement.
Earlier this year, the rapist had also attacked a victim in Bay Ridge.
Anyone who has been the victim of either an assault or attempted assault should immediately call 911.
Anyone who has information regarding the rapist’s identity is strongly urged to contact Crimestoppers at 1-800 577 TIPS (800 577 8477).
Bensonhurst Bean urges all of our readers, regardless of location, to remain alert, especially when walking alone at night.