QUEENS — A 49-year-old Brooklyn man, who has a history of criminal sex abuse against young girls, was arrested in connection with two groping attacks last Saturday against a 6-year-old and a 9-year-old, police said.
Joel Grubert, who has previously also been arrested under the name Marc Grubert, according to the state sex offender database, was arrested Saturday after police released images and a surveillance video that they say shows him leaving the scene of the alleged sexual attacks on June 23.
Police said on Friday that the suspect approched two girls in the Flushing branch of the Queens Public Library, at 41-17 Main St., last Saturday.
The man, who police had described as in his 40s, and 5-foot-7, approached and fondled two girls, one 6, another 9, inside the library.
According to the New York State Office of Sex Offender Management, Grubert had been sentenced to serve 2 years and 4 months back in 2004 for "posessing a sexual performance by a child under 16 years of age" and possibly other abuse charges against young girls that were unclear. No spokesperson was immediately available for comment.
Grubert had eight arrests on record with the NYPD reaching back to 1988, a police spokeswoman said, with six arrests related to sex abuse or possession of illegal pornography.
On Sunday, a reporter attempted to reach family or neighbors at Grubert's East Williamsburg building, 300 Skillman Ave. The facility is operated as a men's shelter, according to online searches, and eight other registered sex offenders, in addition to Grubert, reside in the 5-story residence, according to Homefacts.com.
Grubert faces charges of sexual abuse and endangering the welfare of a child, according to police.
Aidan Gardiner assisted in the reporting of this article.