NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Police say he is dangerous and deceitful.
The search continued Monday for a man who lied his way into the home of an 83-year-old Bronx woman, before trying to rape her.
And investigators said they know who they are looking for, CBS2’s Aundrea Cline-Thomas reported.
Police said 51-year-old Gary Mallette pushed his way into the victim’s Castle Hill Houses apartment on Saturday, adding they’ve arrested him four dozen times before. Some residents said he’s no stranger to the neighborhood.
“I know the dude. I seen him around the area. That’s sad, 83 years old. That’s messed up,” resident Renee Bowser said.
Authorities said Mallette was posing as a maintenance man at the New York City Housing Authority complex when he knocked on the victim’s door. When she opened it police said the suspect pushed his way in, hit her multiple times and tried to rape her.
The victim fought back and Mallette took off, but not before stealing her cellphone and jewelry, police said.
“Just can’t be opening when somebody tells you it’s maintenance. Let me see your badge. If they don’t show you their badge, don’t open your door,” Bowser said.
“I hardly open my door. Unless I know people are coming over, I don’t open my doors,” resident Erica Santiago added.
Police arrived just before 1 p.m. on Saturday. The victim was taken to the hospital where she was diagnosed with broken ribs and injuries to her face.
“I just saw a lot of policemen. … Once I came here the whole street was full of them, but I didn’t know what was happening,” resident Olga Perez said.
Residents said the incident only reinforces the precautions they already take.
“I move very cautious. I always keep something in my pocket, my mace or something. So if you run up on me, there might be a little problem,” Bowser said.
Mallette is described as a 6-foot- and 180-pounds with short hair.
Anyone with information about the attack is asked to call NYPD’s Crime Stoppers hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or 1-888-57-PISTA (74782) for Spanish. You can also submit a tip via the Crime Stoppers website, by Tweeting @NYPDTips or by texting a tip to 274637 (CRIMES) and then entering TIP577.