A man charged with beating his girlfriend and assaulting a police officer escaped from a Bronx court Tuesday morning -- by pretending to be another defendant.
While awaiting his arraignment at the East 161st Street courthouse, Michael Bautista, 22, pretended to be a different detainee, Marcial Sosa, who was being held for the lesser charge of driving with a suspended license.
Believing he was Sosa, authorities mistakenly released Bautista, who walked out of the Bronx Criminal Court after the 10 a.m. arraignment.
Bautista allegedly broke down his girlfriend’s Castle Hill apartment door, punched her in the face, and proceeded to destroy her property. He later returned to the apartment and threatened his girlfriend when the police were called. Bautista reportedly resisted arrest and assaulted a police officer.
Bautista is described as a six-foot, 180-pound Hispanic male, with black hair and brown eyes. He has tattoos of a red scorpion holding a heart on the left side of his neck and a star on right side.
Police are now searching for the fugitive and are urging anyone with information to call the NYPD Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS, text "TIP577" with your message to "CRIMES" (274637), or submit a tip online.