WEST FARMS — A 12-year-old girl was raped in a Bronx alleyway by an attacker who threatened to kill her then dragged her from building to building looking for a secluded spot, police said.
The girl was walking near East Tremont Avenue and Southern Boulevard, in West Farms, about 6:25 p.m. when a man grabbed her by the arm and said he'd kill her if she screamed, NYPD officials said.
The suspect, who can be seen in surveillance video pulling along the terrified girl with her backpack, dragged her about three blocks north to 901 E. 179th St., near Honey Well Avenue, and tried to get in the building. He was unable to get past the locked door, police said.
The suspect, who is in his mid-teens and 5-feet-2, then brought the girl to the apartment building at 915 E. 179th St., but was again unable to get inside, NYPD officials said.
The suspect then forced her into an alleyway on the side of 2064 Daly Ave., near 179th Street, and raped her, police said.
She fled the alley in one direction while the suspect ran the opposite way, police said.
The attack took place about two blocks from the Urban Assembly School for Wildlife Conservation and parents in the area were horrified Friday morning.
"It's crazy. It's scary. My daughter just started walking to school on her own. I told her to take more populated streets today. I'm really concerned," said Diane Jimenez, 49, a mom of a 10-year-old who goes to school in the area.
"It's sickening to attack a 12-year-old girl," said Pedro Villanueva, 62, who works at the building where the girl was attacked.
"I wish I was here and I could've done something. This guy needs to be locked up and maybe more.
"It's not a great neighborhood, but it's not the worst. You just never want to hear about something like this."
Local politicians pledged to find the man responsible for the attack.
"My wife walks our 3-year-old around here all the time. So, we're very disturbed about this," said state Assemblyman Luis Sepulveda, who represents the area and lives two blocks from where the attack occurred.
"We're going to make sure this does not go unsolved," he added.
Anyone with information should contact Crime Stoppers at (800) 577-TIPS (8477).