Police have dropped sexual assault charges against a man who was initially suspected in an attack on a woman in Brooklyn.
Joshua Flecha, 32, was charged Tuesday with sexual abuse and forcible touching for the May 7 attack in Park Slope. Authorities announced Wednesday those charges had been dropped and he was only charged with marijuana possession.
Police sources say the victim changed her story and refused to sign a criminal complaint against Flecha. Without the complaint he can’t be charged.
Flecha, 32, was seen by officers in Windsor Terrace at about 3:15 a.m. Monday, walking slowly in the street. The officers suspected he might be attempting to break into a parked car, and stopped him. They found marijuana on him and then noticed he resembled a police sketch of one of the sex attack suspects.
Another arrest was also made last week for a separate incident in the pattern.
It has been difficult for authorities to pin down exactly how many attacks are related. Last week, the number was at about a dozen, and then recently police said it could be as many as 20 that are part of a similar pattern.
Most of the women attacked since March have been groped and grabbed; one was raped. The assaults have been concentrated in Sunset Park, Park Slope, Windsor Terrace and Bay Ridge.
The latest attack was Thursday night in Windsor Terrace. A woman in her 20s was walking her dog when a man approached her from behind, claimed he had a knife and groped her, according to police.
The victim's alleged attacker apparently ran off after she started screaming. The incident happened on 17th Street near Seventh Avenue at about 10 p.m., police said.
Police last week also released a new poster showing sketches of five suspects wanted for the attacks in the borough.
The previous arrest was made for an Oct. 10 attack near a subway station in Sunset Park.
A 26-year-old man was charged with forcible touching and third-degree sexual abuse for allegedly groping an 18-year-old woman near the subway station at 36th Street and Fourth Avenue.