Queens woman attacked inside Woodside apartment

Stacey Sager reports from Woodside on the search for a suspect
February 4, 2014 2:38:24 PM PST
Police are searching for a man who attacked a 65-year-old woman inside her Queens apartment building, and they're hoping surveillance images will lead to an arrest.

The incident happened around 6 p.m. on January 30 in the vicinity of 50th Street and 43rd Avenue in Woodside.

Surveillance video shows an unknowing tenant walking into an apartment building. The suspect, seconds behind him, makes it in through the open door. He pretends he's someone who lives here, and the tenant, even kindly lets the suspect go ahead of him onto the elevator. No one realizes the man would lurk here in the stairwells, making his way up a flight, and then waiting until a 65-year old woman was entering her apartment.

Police say the man threw her to the ground in her apartment, punched her in the head, but stole nothing. Perhaps because a neighbor went to check on the woman. Seconds later, she became terrified as the attacker made his way out. Fortunately, he did not attack her as well.

People who live around here were shocked after seeing the video. It was a lesson to those who typically don't ask questions when someone enters the building behind them or comes right up to their door.

"After this, I think I would question it twice," neighbor Judy Giraldo said.

Neighbors along this block in Woodside were also very alarmed by this latest attack. They say that recently break-ins like this seem to be happening more frequently.

"Breaking in thru fire escapes, robbing people, casing out places," resident Bobby Bodin said.

In fact, the building's super says this suspect was seen casing out the place just two days before the attack. Police say he's 50 to 60 years old, last seen in a dark coat with a stripe, a baseball cap and white sneakers. If you have any information, please call Crimestoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS.