A woman told police that a man raped her on a Williamsburg street in the early morning on Oct. 4, but cops aren’t taking her word for it, and instead cited dark and grainy surveillance footage as evidence that she was a victim of attempted rape, according to officers and the public report they circulated following the incident.
The 27-year-old victim told authorities that she was walking on Richardson Street between Humbolt and N. Henry streets when the creep crossed the street, pushed her to the ground, removed her underwear, and entered her vagina with his penis without permission, Police Department spokeswoman Cdt. Taylor Cannon said, repeating language used by the victim in the police report she filed about an hour after cameras captured the act around 2:15 am.
“That’s what the actual report says,” Cannon said. “It’s a rape, not attempted.”
But authorities’ Oct. 5 public notice about the incident, which included an edited clip of the surveillance video, described it as an attempted rape, alleging the perv knocked the victim down and penetrated her with his fingers when she tried to fight him off after he approached her from behind on Richardson Street near Kingsland Avenue, pushed her against the wall of a building, and tore off her underwear.
When asked to explain cops’ description of the incident as an attempted rape when the victim told them she was raped, Cannon initially said it was a mistake.
“It’s an error,” she said.
But when pushed about the discrepancy and why police would publicly describe the incident as an attempted rape despite the victim’s own statement to the contrary, Cannon put this reporter on hold, then said the blurry footage officers obtained provided a more accurate account of the incident than the woman did when reporting it an hour after it happened.
“The victim doesn’t always have an accurate recollection of what happened. No penis to vagina contact,” said Cannon, before transferring the call to her supervisor, Sgt. Lee Jones.
Jones also insisted the full video — which authorities did not publicly share — doesn’t actually show the perv’s penis enter the victim’s vagina, but only him molesting her.
“The video doesn’t show that she was raped. Not every criminal sex act is rape,” he said. “She made a statement, we saw the video.”
And the nature of the crime wasn’t the only point of confusion in the reps’ accounts of the incident, which occurred roughly two days before 50 United States senators decided multiple women’s allegations of sexual assault against Justice Brett Kavanaugh were not substantiated enough to deprive him of a lifetime appointment on the Supreme Court.
Each police rep provided a different timeline in describing the victim’s actions following the attack.
Cannon said the victim took an Uber from Kingsland Avenue to the 90th Precinct station house, where paramedics met her and took her to Woodhull Hospital for a rape kit.
But Jones said the victim first went back to her apartment, and then with her roommate came to the station house before paramedics took her to the hospital from there.
Authorities are still hunting for the slimeball, who fled in a dark-colored sedan towards Morgan Avenue following the attack, Jones said.
And should police arrest the man and charge him with attempted rape, prosecutors can always change the charge based on their own investigation, according to a rep for the district attorney’s office.
Anyone with information regarding the incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (800) 577–8477. The public can also submit tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website at www.nypdcrimestoppers.com or by texting tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then entering TIP577. All tips are strictly confidential.