Man arrested in violent mugging of woman sitting on bench in Central Park

CENTRAL PARK, Manhattan (WABC) -- A man is under arrest after the violent mugging of a woman on a park bench was caught on video.

Police announced Monday that 53-year-old Gerardo Rosario Cruz was arrested and charged with robbery.

The incident happened Friday next to the Harlem Meer near East 110th Street and East Drive at around 10:00 a.m.

The video shows the suspect walk up to a 40-year-old woman sitting on a bench next to the Harlem Meer and rip her phone out of her hands.

As she struggled to get it back, the suspect punched the victim in the face, knocking her to the ground. She refused medical attention at the scene.

He then fled from the park towards East 110 Street and Central Park North.

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As he was running away, one eyewitness sticks out her leg in an unsuccessful attempt to trip him.

Authorities say another eyewitness ran after the suspect and was able to get the phone back and return it to its owner.

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