The 102nd Precinct says it has beefed up patrols within Forest Park after a woman was attacked while jogging there on Friday evening.
The victim, 23, was in the park near the intersection of Metropolitan Avenue and Jackie Robinson Parkway around 7:25 p.m. on Friday evening, when she was attacked by a man with a stun gun. The perpetrator tasered the victim and dragged her into a remote area off the path she was jogging alone, where he sexually assaulted her and attempted to remove her clothes. The victim fought the attacker.
Police say a couple walking nearby with a dog startled the attacker and he ran off with the victim’s iPhone. The victim was taken to Queens Hospital Center and treated for injuries to her neck. The suspect is still at large. He is described as being white, between 35 and 40 years old, 5 feet, 9 inches tall, having a medium build with reddish brown hair and facial hair. They said he was seen wearing a gold hoop earring and a navy blue hoodie and track pants.
The section of the park where the attack happened is home to a number of winding bridle paths that connect the Forest Hills side of the park at Union Turnpike and 71st Avenue to Forest Park Drive and pass through heavily wooded areas.Though the trails are often very popular during the day, there are few lights and they are pitch dark at night. The attack occurred at dusk. In spring and fall, it is common to see people jogging in the park’s trails around dusk and even after dark.
At a number of meetings of the 102nd Precinct’s community council in the past few years, officers have warned joggers not to run after sundown because of the danger in the park. Last August, a man forced a woman to the ground and groped her while she was walking in the park.
The park is also notorious for being a haven for drug use and sexual activity, especially along Park Lane South between Metropolitan and Myrtle avenues, not far from where Friday’s attack took place. The problem goes back decades, and police have often been staked out along Park Lane South in order to crack down on the problem.
Anyone with information on Friday’s attack is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (800) 577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit tips by logging onto nypdcrimestoppers.com, or by texting 274637 (CRIMES), then entering TIP577. All tips are strictly confidential.