NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The search continues for a man who police said tried to sexually assault a woman with three children in Queens.
New surveillance video released by police Wednesday night shows the end of a frightening attack.
Around 2:45 a.m. Sunday, the woman told police she got into the man’s dark-colored sedan after he said he was a livery cab driver.
Police said he took her and her kids, ages 5, 3, and 1 , on an 11-mile ride from 207th Street in Manhattan to Queens to a homeless shelter at the former Pan American Hotel on Queens Boulevard in Elmhurst, police said.
When they arrived, police said the driver tried to sexually assault the woman.
In the surveillance video, the man can be seen lifting a child out of the back seat, leaving her on the sidewalk.
The mother gets out of the car with a second child but then gets in a struggle with the man. That’s when police said he elbows one of her kids in the head.
Moments later, the suspect lunges into the car and grabs the third child. In the video, he then throws that child from the car on to the sidewalk.
The man then jumps into the driver’s seat and takes off. The woman, losing her desperate fight to keep him at the scene.
“She was panicking,” neighbor Aaron Ling told CBS 2’s Weijia Jiang. “She kept screaming, ‘police, police!’ I ran over here because I thought someone was dying or something.”
The woman’s loud cries for help woke up several people in the neighborhood, including James Yang who lives in the house where the surveillance camera is mounted.
Although shaken, neighbors are grateful the car stopped in front of Yang’s home, one of the only houses on the block with a security camera.
“I saw the lady with the kids, but I don’t know what really happened,” Yang said.
Police said there is no indication the attacker was a licensed livery cab driver.
Investigators say he is Hispanic, possibly in his 40s. The victim said he spoke Spanish, had an earring in his right ear and manicured eyebrows.
Police said he was last seen wearing a dark blue sweat suit with white stripes.
Two of the three children were treated for minor injuries.
In a statement, representatives from the homeless shelter said they were offering support to the victim and her family.
Anyone with information is asked to call Crime stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), visit the Crime stoppers website or text tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577.
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