In the last few days there have been two sexual assaults in south Brooklyn, one in Windsor Terrace and the other in Sunset Park. The attack in Windsor Terrace, in which a young woman was groped from behind on Vanderbilt Street, is definitely the work of one of the suspects in string of recent assaults in the area, according to police. But last night’s crime on 36th Street and Fourth Avenue in Sunset Park — another woman grabbed from behind while walking — isn’t thought to be part of the pattern.
Cops say that last night’s Sunset Park suspect doesn’t fit the profile of the others (there may be as many as three). While he’s Hispanic, he’s also older. The victim is 18.
According to the Post, Ray Kelly spoke to reporters and said that “We’ve done a lot of canvasses. We are going through pictures. We are going through motion pictures.”
The attack marks the 13th such incident in the area since March. Despite this, Community Board 7 District Manager Jeremy Luafer said “I would not say there’s a tangible fear in the community. It’s more an attitude of ‘we’ve got to get out and fight.'”
But the crimes have put the neighborhoods involved on edge anyway, especially with regard to their relationship with the police. Community group Safe Slope and Hollaback! met with 72nd and 78th precinct Deputy Inspectors last night to address their concerns about the way cops have handled their increased presence in Park Slope and the surrounding neighborhoods. They negotiated with the police to enforce their giving people “trigger warnings” before showing them videos of attacks and warning women before escorting them home. The groups are also producing public safety education materials for the NYPD’s consideration and they’ve proposed that the NYPD start “sensitivity training” for its officers.