Homeless Man Accused of Tompkins Square Park Rape

The sexual assault took place at about 11:30 p.m. Friday

Monday, Oct 8, 2012  |  Updated 6:44 AM EDT
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Woman Raped in Tompkins Square Park: Cops

NBC 4 New York

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A homeless man has been arrested and charged with raping a woman in Tompkins Square Park, police said.

The sexual assault took place at approximately 11:30 p.m. Friday, when Ruben Canales, 27, allegedly attacked a 31-year-old woman who was napping on a bench in the Lower East Side park.

Police said the woman was eventually able to fight off Canales, and then ran to a nearby deli.

Canales followed the woman, and deli workers called 911.

This attack comes in the wake of two other recent rapes in city parks.

On Sept. 12, authorities say a known drifter from Virginia assaulted a 73-year-old birdwatcher in broad daylight in Central Park.

On Sept. 22, police say a 21-year-old woman who was sitting on a bench in Hudson River Park watching the sunrise was attacked by a known sex offender and violently raped.

The previous two attacks prompted City Council Speaker Christine Quinn to speak out against NYPD budget cuts and to organize self defense classes for women in city parks.

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