Crown Heights man indicted for alleged rape of 81-year-old neighbor

brooklyn da eric gonzalez rape indictment
The Brooklyn District Attorney’s office has indicted a Crown Heights man for the alleged rape of his neighbor.
File photo by Colin Mixson

A 50-year-old Crown Heights man has been indicted by the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office for the alleged rape and strangulation of his 81-year-old neighbor. 

“The violent and brutal assault of an elderly woman allegedly perpetrated by this defendant shocks the conscience and our prosecutors are committed to seeking justice and accountability,” said Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez in a Nov. 1 statement. “This kind of depraved conduct will not be tolerated, and our thoughts remain with the victim as she recovers from this horrifically traumatic crime.”

The purported rapist, Thomas Johnson, allegedly broke into the victim’s home in the early hours of Sept. 27, strangled her twice until she was unconscious and sexually assaulted her, according to the DA’s office. Johnson is being charged in a 16-count indictment for his alleged crimes.

Investigators said the victim woke up around 3 am on Sept. 27 to noises in her apartment and walked into the kitchen, where she saw Johnson. He then allegedly strangled her until she went unconscious for the first time. 

The victim told investigators that when she came, to she started crawling to her bedroom, where Johnson allegedly strangled her a second time until she lost consciousness again. When the victim woke up, she said she was bleeding from her mouth and nose, and she yelled for help. Her relatives, who live upstairs, heard her, and went down to help, and called 911. 

The attack left the 81-year-old with bloodshot eyes, a dislocated jaw, difficulty breathing, bleeding from her mouth and nose and injuries to her genitals.

Johnson’s 16 charges include first, second and third-degree burglary as a sexually motivated felony, second-degree strangulation as a sexually motivated felony, first-degree sexual abuse, criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation, second-degree assault as a sexually motivated felony in addition to other related charges. 

The defendant is being held without bail and is scheduled to reappear in court on Dec. 1.