Alleged Knife-Wielding Kissena Park Rapist Heads to Court
Charles Tobin is charged with the knifepoint sexual assaults of two women in Flushing’s Kissena Park in 2017. The first rape occurred after Tobin allegedly demanded money from a 32-year-old woman at knifepoint before pulling her into a trail in a wooded area and raping her.
The next night, Tobin allegedly held a knife to a 17-year-old girl, forced her into the woods and made her perform a sex act. Both victims were treated at a local hospital.
“Our City parks should be a safe haven for people at any time of the day or night,” Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said in a statement. “But earlier this week it is alleged that a human predator lurked in the darkness and, in separate attacks, ambushed two lone women – one 32, the other only 17 – at knifepoint, raping and robbing one and attempting to rob the other before sexually assaulting her. The defendant now faces the possibility of spending the rest of his life behind bars if convicted.”
Brown said that, according to the charges, Tobin held a knife to a 32-year old woman as she was walking in Kissena Park just before 11 p.m. in July 2017 and demanded money. It is alleged that after the victim handed him money from her purse, Tobin forced her to perform a sex act on him before raping her.
The next night, Tobin allegedly held a knife to a 17-year-old female jogger, who was inside Kissena Park at approximately 11 p.m., and demanded money. According to the charges, the girl allegedly responded that she did not have any money and Tobin said, “Then you will have to do something for me.”
Tobin allegedly held the knife to her neck and sexually abused her before forcing her to perform a sex act on him.
The investigation was conducted by New York City Police Department Detective James Ropenus, of the Queens Special Victims Squad, and by Assistant District Attorneys Alison L. Andrews and Talia Seidel, who are assigned to District Attorney Brown Special Victims Bureau. Assistant District Attorneys Alison L. Andrews, who is a section chief in the Special Victims Bureau, and Talia Seidel, also of the Special Victims Bureau, is prosecuting the case under the supervision of Assistant District Attorneys Kenneth M. Appelbaum, Bureau Chief, Debra Lynn Pomodore and Eric C. Rosenbaum, Deputy Bureau Chiefs, and the overall supervision of Executive Assistant District Attorney for Major Crimes Daniel A. Saunders and Deputy Executive Assistant District Attorney for Major Crimes Brad Leventhal.
JUSTICE BUCHTER PRESIDES