CENTRAL PARK (WABC) -- In line with the recent rise in violence in the city a 9-year-old girl was punched in the head while in Central Park.
The girl and her 36-year-old mother were visiting from Miami, Florida on Monday when a man approached them and struck the child.
And the NYPD say the suspect was caught thanks to the fast thinking and brave response of a veteran doorman at the Plaza Hotel on Central Park South.
"I saw a guy screaming and screaming and walking very quickly toward a family that had a baby in a baby carriage and a little girl," said Plaza doorman Neil Johnson. "The little girl was holding her head and she was crying. The mother was screaming."
Johnson has been a doorman at the Plaza Hotel for 24 years.
He said he was walking towards Central Park South to hail a cab for a customer when he heard the screams.
That's when Johnson put himself between the man and the frightened family to protect them.
Johnson says the man was aggressively pursuing the victims.
"I told him to stop by yelling louder than him," Johnson said. "You better stay where you are."
Eventually, another New Yorker stepped in to help Johnson. That's when the doorman called the police.
Officers arrested 27-year-old Raheem Ramsarran who was later charged with assault.
The little girl's family declined going to the hospital and she's expected to be okay.
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