The Occupy Wall Street encampment in Zuccotti Park has had to deal with its share of undesirable behavior, from uncooperative drummers to a drug-related arrest, but Wednesday saw the most serious criminal allegations yet, as a volunteer in the encampment's kitchen has been arrested for sexual assault and rape. The 26-year-old volunteer, a Crown Heights man named Tonye Iketubosin, was known in the kitchen as Tonye Parks, one cooking colleague told Gothamist. "He was a genuinely nice guy...he came to get shit done," kitchen volunteer Beau Sibbing told the news blog. But after two different women reported he had raped one and groped another, his fellow volunteers told him to leave.
After word had spread of the alleged assaults, Iketubosin was told not to come to kitchen meetings and to stay away from the park, "but he kept coming." Sibbing said that around 9 p.m. last night "a whole bunch of people came and made him leave the park. Then the NYPD picked him up. I wasn't sure if it was for his own safety or if he was being arrested."
Before his arrest, Iketubosin denied he assaulted either of his 18-year-old accusers, Sibbing said. He "was adamant that it wasn't him." One woman told police she had gotten into an argument with her tent-mate at 6 a.m. Saturday, and had met Iketubosin when she left. "He offered to let her sleep in his tent, saying he had to go work in the park’s makeshift kitchen," The Wall Street Journal reported. "The alleged victim took Iketubosin up on his offer and went to sleep. But she said she soon awoke to find Iketubosin removing her pants, the [unnamed law enforcement] official said. She told police she asked him to stop, but he didn’t comply. Then he raped her, the official said." The other woman says Iketubosin helped her set up her tent on the evening of Oct. 24, then snuck in early the next morning and groped her until she pushed him away.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to email@example.com.