DEFENDANT INDICTED FOR RAPING 73-YEAR-OLD WOMAN IN CENTRAL PARK

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the indictment of DAVID MITCHELL, 42, for the rape of a 73-year-old woman in Central Park. The defendant is charged in New York State Supreme Court with Rape in the First Degree, Criminal Sexual Act in the First Degree, and Sexually Motivated Robbery in the Second Degree, among other charges. The same indictment also charges MITCHELL with Sexual Abuse in the Third Degree for attacks on two women on the Upper West Side on the same day, as well as with Menacing in the Second Degree and Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Third Degree for a separate incident in Central Park that occurred weeks earlier.[1]

“Any sexual assault is unacceptable, but one that occurred in broad daylight in a public place is particularly shocking,” said District Attorney Vance. “We thank the victim for her courage, and for her assistance in the investigation, and we thank the NYPD for its swift apprehension of the suspect, which led to today’s indictment.”

According to documents filed in court and statements made on the record in court, the 73-year-old victim had observed the defendant masturbating in Central Park several weeks before the attack and took his photo with her camera as evidence of the lewd act. On September 12, 2012, MITCHELL approached the victim in Central Park and asked if she recognized him. Though she did, the victim responded that she did not and walked away. According to today’s charges, the defendant then grabbed her from behind, began to strangle her, and forcefully hit her head on the ground. After assaulting and raping the victim for several minutes, MITCHELL fled with the victim’s camera bag. The victim immediately reported the attack and her injuries to the police.

MITCHELL is also charged with attacking two additional women on the Upper West Side, after fleeing Central Park but before he was arrested. He is charged with Forcible Touching and Sexual Abuse in the Third Degree for the first attack, and Sexual Abuse in the Third Degree for the second.

Three weeks earlier, on August 20, 2012, according to documents filed in court and statements made on the record in court, MITCHELL engaged in an argument with a man in Central Park. The argument turned violent, and MITCHELL pulled a knife on the victim, threatening to stab him. The victim was not injured.

Assistant District Attorney James Zaleta is prosecuting this case under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Kerry O’Connell, Chief of Trial Bureau 80, and Assistant District Attorney Martha Bashford, Chief of the Sex Crimes Unit. District Attorney Vance thanked Lt. Adam Lamboy and Police Officer Anthony West of the NYPD’s Special Victims Squad, and Police Officers Sicelin Ortiz, Steven Ourelio, and Emanual Rodriguez-Marte, of Patrol Borough Manhattan North Impact.

Defendant information:

DAVID MITCHELL, D.O.B. 4/13/1970
Unknown Address

Charges:

Rape in the First Degree, a class B felony, 1 count
Criminal Sexual Act in the First Degree, a class B felony, one count
Robbery in the Second Degree as a Sexually Motivated Felony, a class C felony, 1 count
Assault in the Second Degree as a Sexually Motivated Felony, a class D felony, 2 counts
Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Third Degree, a class D felony, 1 count
Strangulation in the Second Degree as a Sexually Motivated Felony, a class D felony, 1 count
Forcible Touching, a class A misdemeanor, 1 count
Menacing in the Second Degree, a class A misdemeanor, 1 count
Sexual Abuse in the Third Degree, a class B misdemeanor, 2 counts
Public Lewdness, a class B misdemeanor, 1 count



[1] The charges contained in the indictment are merely allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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