Grabbed! Cops bust 50-year-old for Bay Ridge sex assault

Police arrested Steven Pappas because he closely resembled a sketch of the suspect in the Dec. 23 sex assault.

Police have arrested a convicted sex offender in connection with a Dec. 23 sex assault on a 15-year-old boy in Bay Ridge — but this wasn’t the first time he’d sexually abused an adolescent in the bucolic family-friendly community, investigators say.

Police say suspect Steven Pappas, 50, pretended to be a police officer when he abducted his victim and brought him to 92nd Street near Dalgren Place, where he forced the teenager to perform a sexual act.

Yet cops say this isn’t the first time Pappas has done this: in 2009, he sexually assaulted a 12-year-old boy to 97th Street near Fort Hamilton Parkway.

In both cases, Pappas, who was sentenced to five years in prison for sexually abusing a 14-year-old boy in 1999, wandered around Sunset Park looking for his victim.

In the Dec. 23 attack, he found his victim waiting for a train at the 53rd Street subway station at 9:30 am. The victim said Pappas flashed a badge, identified himself as a police officer and accused him of littering. He then ordered the teen to get into a white van parked nearby and drove him to Bay Ridge, where the attack took place, police said.

Pappas then drove the teen back to Sunset Park, releasing him on 36th Street at Fourth Avenue.

Police said they targeted Pappas because he closely resembled a sketch of the suspect. When cops approached the 50th Street resident on Friday, he drove away from them — only to be arrested at the corner of 67th Street and Shore Parkway.

Investigators quickly connected the 2009 case to Pappas, who was still awaiting arraignment on Friday evening.

The sickening attack — and Pappas’s penchant of abusing teens in Bay Ridge, has left residents on edge.

“I have children of my own, so I’m very upset when something like this happens,” said Bay Ridge resident Michael McLeer, who lives near Dalgren Place. “It’s hard to let your kids out these days.”

Reach reporter Colin MIxson at cmixson@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4514.

More from Around New York