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Man Who Attacked German Tourist May Have Groped Another Woman, Police Say

By  Ben Fractenberg and Aidan Gardiner | May 5, 2017 3:01pm | Updated on May 8, 2017 8:56am

 Investigators have identified the man and hope to catch him soon, officials said.
Investigators have identified the man and hope to catch him soon, officials said.
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MANHATTAN — Investigators believe one man beat, groped and robbed a German tourist Thursday, 11 days after he similarly attacked another woman near Jackie Robinson Park, officials said.

Warning: Graphic Video

Investigators identified the man on Friday based on video tied to the first attack on April 24, according to Robert Boyce, the NYPD's chief of detectives.

"Right now, they look to be the same cases, the same M.O.," Boyce said.

"We went through our photo matcher and a detective was able to make an identification. Very similar. We showed it to [the victim of the first attack] in a photo array and she identified him immediately. So, we are going forward with arresting him right now," Boyce said.

The suspect hadn't been arrested as of Friday afternoon, police said.

In the first attack, the suspect came up behind a 35-year-old woman as she walked past 130 Bradhurst Ave. about 4 a.m. and told her, "I have a gun. Just give me your bag," Boyce said.

"At which point, she screams. She is punched at that point by the perpetrator," Boyce said.

He also reached into her pants before fleeing with her bag, NYPD officials said.

Investigators were able to track the attacker to what appears to be a Home Depot which helped them identify him, Boyce said.

"We have video of him coming out of a store where he uses the credit card from the first case," Boyce said.

But then police believe he attacked a German tourist as she left a subway station on her way to an Airbnb she was staying at about 2:50 a.m. Thursday, they said.

"We have about the same time of night, before 3 o'clock in the morning. We have a young lady walking. She is a German national. She's in town staying at a nearby Airbnb," Boyce said.

"[He] said the same exact thing: 'I have a gun. Give me your bag,'" Boyce said.

"And that's the conversation that goes back and forth at which time then it gets violent after that," the chief added.

Video shows him wrapping his arms around her and groping her. He then takes her bag and punches her to the ground when she tries to grab it back.

He then sexually assaults her as she lay prone on the sidewalk next to a heap of trash, video shows.

"Once [we catch him], we'll put him in a lineup for the second case," Boyce said.

In the meantime, investigators were asking anyone with information to call them.

"We're asking everyone in the neighborhood, if they know this individual, to call the police immediately," Boyce said.