NYPD: 14 Arrests Made in Random Attacks on Women

Chief of detectives says 50 women attacked in lower Manhattan so far this year
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 22, 2024 4:07 PM CDT
NYPD: 50 Women Randomly Attacked in Manhattan This Year
Mayor Eric Adams, left, listens as NYPD Chief of Detectives Joseph Kenny, right, speaks at press conference earlier this year.   (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

New York Police Department Chief of Detectives Joseph Kenny said Monday that while it is not a new trend for women to be randomly attacked, he welcomes the new attention the issue is getting. Kenny said 50 women have been attacked by strangers in lower Manhattan so far this year, with 37 attacks in the street and 13 in the transit system, the New York Post reports. Some victims have described the attacks in videos on social media, reports CBS News. "I literally just got punched by some man on the sidewalk. He goes 'Sorry' and then punches me in the head," Olivia Brand said in a TikTok video last month.

"This is no new phenomenon," Kenny said, per the Post. "It's just being reported at a higher rate and getting a lot more publicity than it normally does because of social media." He said arrests have been made in 14 of the attacks, and the NYPD wants to "encourage reporting so that we can make these arrests." Last month, the Washington Post reported that attack victims' videos on Instagram and TikTok were "reaching a vast audience beyond New York thanks to algorithmically driven social feed."

One victim was social media influencer Halley Mcgookin, who described the attack in a TikTok video last month, saying, "You guys, I was literally just walking and a man came up and punched me in the face." Skiboky Stora, a former mayoral candidate, was arrested two days later. Kenny said Stora has been charged in connection with the attack on Mcgookin and two other assaults in Manhattan last year. (More New York City stories.)

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