U.S. News

New York City police search for final suspect in playground rape

NEW YORK (Reuters) - New York City police were searching for the last of five males suspected of raping an 18-year-old woman in a Brooklyn playground late last week, police said on Monday.

Officers had taken into custody four of the suspects, aged between 14 and 17, by Sunday night. Two of the suspects were apprehended and another two turned themselves in.

The rape occurred just after 9 p.m. on Thursday.

The victim was walking with her father through a playground operated by the New York City Parks Department in the Brownsville section of Brooklyn, when the five males approached them, police said. One of the young men pointed a gun at the pair and ordered the father to leave.

After the father left the scene, each of the males raped the woman, police said. By the time the father returned with two uniformed police officers, the suspects had fled.

The woman was taken to a local hospital, where she was treated and released.

Police have revealed surveillance video taken in a nearby grocery store that they said showed the five suspects before the attack.

The video depicts a group of young black men in jackets and sweatshirts talking and laughing inside the store.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio on Sunday denounced the crime and said the city would “not stop until the perpetrators of this disturbing attack are held accountable.”

De Blasio and his police force has been under scrutiny for recent crime trends.

While New York registered an overall drop of 1.7 percent in major crimes over the past year, certain categories of crime have been on the rise. Rapes were up 6.3 percent last year.

Reporting by Laila Kearney; Editing by Andrew Hay