The New York Criminal Law Blog

Central Park Rape Suspect Arrested in Attack on Woman, 73

She is an avid bird watcher and regular visitor to the Strawberry Fields area in Central Park. She refers to it as "my park." She was bird watching the first time she came across her alleged attacker, 42-year-old David Albert Mitchell. She caught him masturbating in the park. She snapped a photo of him. He immediately threatened her and tried to seize her camera. She escaped unharmed.

A week later, the 73-year-old Upper West Side resident was again bird watching when Mitchell approached her and asked if she remembered him. He then allegedly raped her and slammed her face into the ground multiple times. In addition to the trauma, scrapes, and bruises, she also suffered a broken eye socket. Hours later, she told the New York Post:

"Kill him. Cut off his penis. That's fine. Cut off his feet, then hit him over the head. Then give him life in prison ... I'm a little jittery. I get the shakes. But I'm more angry. I hope he goes to jail for a long time, and he gets raped, over and over again."

While amputation isn't called for under the law, Mitchell faces a third-degree rape charge (higher degrees are reserved for child rape and rape of the incapacitated), which carries up to four years in prison if he's convicted.

Mitchell will also be facing charges of predatory sexual assault, criminal sexual act, assault, and robbery because he allegedly swiped memory cards from the victim's camera during the attack, reports NBC 4.

In Mitchell's case, he can only be convicted on one of his sex crimes (because a person can't be punished twice for the same crime, no matter how much he deserves it). Still, he's facing more time than we can count if convicted for the alleged Central Park rape.

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