Man arrested in sex assault of 73-year-old woman

August 26, 2013 8:19:22 PM PDT
A senior citizen was sexually assaulted in her own home.

Police say they arrested the man who allegedly forced his way into the victim's home in the Bronx.

"Animal", that is how Maria Almonte describes the man who sexually assaulted her 73-year-old neighbor Saturday night.

Police say Gerson Rodriguez of the Bronx is that man. Investigators arrested the 33-year-old Monday evening and charged him with a criminal sex act and burglary.

"I am very frustrated, I am angry. I was going to come down with something because I don't know if they are going to get me in the hallway, in the elevator or at my door. (Are you fearful?) Um, yes, yes," said Maria Ortega, a building resident.

The attack happened inside the victim's fifth floor apartment in Mott Haven. 20-year-old J.C. Reyes lives two doors away from the elderly woman. He's known her all his life.

"To me that is disgusting, that is vile, that is low. (Sweetheart lady?) She is, a sweetheart," Reyes said.

There is a surveillance camera in the hallway just outside the victim's apartment, but whether it captured video of the attacker is unclear.

Longtime tenant Maria Ortega told Eyewitness News the building also has a security staff, but she rarely sees them.

"We have security, but where they at. And not only, but when they do be here they should wear uniforms so they can see that there is security here," Ortega said.