Authorities in New York say a 51-year-old woman was able to stop a would-be rapist by dousing him with a cup of hot coffee.
According to WLNY, the suspect allegedly followed the victim into the latter’s Manhattan apartment building at about 9:50 a.m. on Thursday and pulled her pants down.
The quick-thinking woman reportedly stunned the man — later identified by police as 38-year-old Victor Cueto — with a coffee splash to the face and he took off as she shouted for help, as reported by WPIX.
Reports indicate the building posted surveillance footage to a Facebook page and authorities soon became involved.
Police later located Cueto and arrested him. He is expected to face criminal charges including sexual abuse, attempted rape, and burglary.
Neighbors expressed dismay over the brazen attack, including one woman who says she is now frightened to enter and exit the building.
“I always look behind me before I enter the building, always,” she said. “And if I don’t know who it is, I just won’t enter the building.”
Susan Perez recalled seeing “police activity and detectives,” explaining that’s when she knew “something major happened.”
Some neighbors including Giadia Geraci heralded the alleged victim’s actions in the face of danger.
“You’ve got to use everything you have,” she said. “It’s great that she didn’t freeze.”
Police say the investigation remains ongoing and encourage anyone with information about the incident to contact the New York Police Department’s Crime Stoppers hotline by calling 1-800-577-TIPS or for Spanish-speakers, 1-800-57-PISTA. Tips can also be left on the organization’s website, by tweeting @NYPDTips, or by texting 274637 with the message TIP577.
[Featured image: New York Police Department]