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The man accused of groping a woman in Sunset Park is being held without bail pending a psychiatric evaluation.
Police say that Adolfo Martinez, a 26-year-old Sunset Park resident, confessed to fondling an 18-year-old woman on Tuesday — allegedly solving one of the 13 sex attacks that have terrorized the area since March.
“Right now, it’s an open case, and the next step is for him to evaluated,” a law-enforcement source said after Martinez’s arraignment on Thursday. “There will be a lot of discussions before we get the results [of the exam].”
Martinez, a Mexican immigrant who works in a fish market in Chinatown, faces misdemeanor charges of forcible touching and sexual abuse for allegedly following a woman as she left the 36th Street subway at Fourth Avenue on Monday evening. Cops say he grabbed her buttocks and whispered, “Adios, mami” before she screamed and he fled.
Martinez’s lawyer, Juan Fiol, wouldn’t comment, but said that Martinez — who required a Spanish-speaking interpreter — didn’t understand the court proceedings.
Police arrested Martinez near his 42nd Street home in Sunset Park on Tuesday night after recognizing his two-tone work boots from a surveillance video, cops said. The next day, investigators put Martinez through lineups to see if he could be linked to any of the other attempted rapes that have terrorized a swath of Park Slope to Sunset Park for months.
He hasn’t been charged in any other recent attacks, but police sources say that he’s a serial sex abuser.
Martinez was arrested in 2007 for grabbing a woman’s behind on Chrystie and Grand streets in Manhattan. Back then, he was charged with forcible touching but released without bail. He never returned to court, officials said.
“I have a problem. I get these little urges,” said Martinez during questioning four years ago, according to DNAInfo, a website. That report said that Martinez told cops that he never goes further than grabbing women and that his “urges” began in his youth following a car accident.
Martinez fits the description of the fiend: He is short, Hispanic and in his 20s. A warrant for his arrest from the earlier case was still in effect when cops caught up with him on Tuesday.
But then again, who knows — after all, police have released five sketches of the possible assailant, who tends to sneak up on women from behind and grope them before running off when they scream.
Of the 13 known attacks, one resulted in a rape.
But Martinez’s younger brother, Antonio Martinez, told our sister publication, the New York Post, that the alleged fiend was innocent.
“I feel that he didn’t do this, he’s not that kind of guy,” Martinez said, adding that his brother had been working in Canada for the last six months and only returned to the city a week ago.
Locals say that the arrest has done little to quell community fears when there’s more than one sex fiend on the loose.
“I understand that people might be more safe and sound at the moment, but for me this is like putting a Band-Aid on a gushing wound,” said Trisha Casabona, 31, of South Slope.
Terror had once again filled Windsor Terrace earlier this week after the South Slope Sex Fiend groped a 20-year-old woman near 19th and Vanderbilt streets on Sunday at 11:30 pm.
Hours later, the Sunset Park woman was groped, sending dozens of cops into the streets on Tuesday before Martinez’s arrest.
Deputy Inspector Raul Pintos, commanding officer of the 72nd Precinct, said that plainclothes cops would continue to patrol Sunset Park, Windsor Terrace and South Slope to catch the sex fiends.
“There’s more than one perp in these attacks,” Pintos said. “We’re vocal about asking people to report things to give us fresh information. We don’t want to squander any opportunity to catch these men.”
— with Thomas Tracy
©2011 Community Newspaper Group
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