A 21-year-old woman was sexually assaulted by a homeless man in Hudson River Park early Saturday morning, police said.
The woman was sitting on a bench inside the park, which stretches along Manhattan's West Side, talking on her cell phone when at approximately 5 a.m a man approached her. Police said the man then hit the woman, attempted to strangle her and dragged her into some bushes where he sexually assaulted her.
The woman was eventually able to break free and fled her attacker, police said. She found a police officer and gave a description of the man, who was arrested soon after, based on her description.
Police have identified the homeless attacker as 25-year-old Jonathan Stewart. He was charged Saturday with rape first degree, criminal sex act, sex abuse, assault and forcible touching.