Girl, 9, hit in the head by adult in Central Park attack: police officers

A 9-year-old Miami girl visiting the Big Apple with her mother received a hit in the head while walking near Central Park on Monday – and a porter at The Plaza made sure the attacker didn’t escape could before the police showed up.

Suspect Raheem Ramsarran, 27, allegedly struck the young tourist on the left side of her head at around 11:20 a.m. at the corner of Central Park South and Grand Army Plaza, police sources said.

“We saw a man with a backpack, a red hoodie and a beige jacket, who was yelling at people and people were literally running from him and he was like a hoot,” said Kimberly Thomas, 24, who was diagnosed with a nearby COVID-19 outbreak. Test was working as of Monday morning when the attack happened.

General view of the golden equestrian statue of William Tecumseh Sherman in Grand Army Plaza at the intersection of Central Park South and Fifth Avenue
Suspect Raheem Ramsarran reportedly punched the young girl on the left side of her head.
Ben Hider/Getty Images

Neil Johnson, 60, was at work as a doorman at The Plaza Hotel on Monday when he heard the suspect scream and ran to the scene to help.

“I saw the woman crying and they ran away from this guy and he came towards them quickly. So I have to do something,” he told the Post. “I got between her and those lunatics. And then another guy came up to me who apparently noticed the whole thing. So we just made sure that person couldn’t leave.”

Johnson said he saw the poor girl holding her head and was clearly in pain. He called the police while trying to make sure the suspect didn’t attack them again.

Portrait of Plaza Hotel doorman Neil Johnson, 60, who intervened when a computer allegedly attacked a 9-year-old girl visiting from Miami.
Portrait of Plaza Hotel doorman Neil Johnson, 60, who intervened when a man allegedly assaulted a 9-year-old girl visiting from Miami.
James Keivom for the NY Post

The girl was treated at the scene and complained of pain on the left side of her head. Her mother, Yelena Contreras Molerio, 36, declined an offer to continue medical treatment for her child, police said. The girl’s name is unknown. The post could not reach Contreras Molerio on Monday.

Cops said Ramsarran was arrested about 15 minutes after the alleged attack at 30 Central Park South. He was transferred to the Midtown North District and is currently in custody.

“When he realized he couldn’t go any further, we wouldn’t let him, he stayed there and started yelling, ‘Where are the cops? Where are the cops?’” Johnson said.

The suspect’s screams were largely unintelligible and sounded like angry noises, Thomas said.

“I thought he was following someone. I didn’t know he hit anyone,” she said.

The motive for the alleged attack was unclear as of Monday afternoon, and it was witnesses who called police after seeing the unprovoked hit.

Ahmed Ahmed, 41, who runs a food truck on the corner of Grand Army Plaza and Central Park South, saw the incident, but he didn’t describe the contact as a slapstick.

“I saw this guy, he had a bag and he bumped into a little girl,” Ahmed said while making a shoving motion.

Amhed saw the alleged suspect “push the girl to the ground and then ran,” but said it all happened so quickly he may not have the full picture.

Ramsarran’s last known address is in Harlem.

Neil Johnson
Johnson said he saw the poor girl holding her head and was clearly in pain.
James Keivom for the NY Post

Police sources said officers were called to Ramsarran’s former Queens address in 2018 and again in 2019 with reports of an emotionally disturbed individual and that he told responding officers that he was not on any medication. At one point he said he felt suicidal and wanted to be hospitalized, they said.

Johnson told the Post it was “pretty clear” the suspect suffered from mental health issues. In his 24 years at the Plaza, he says, he’s never seen anything like Monday morning’s punch.

“There was always fighting and stuff like that, but nothing really worrying. That was nothing short of unheard of in terms of mental health,” he said, adding that the city needs more hospitals to treat people with mental illness.

When a Post reporter told him the girl was in town from Miami, he replied, “This little girl will never want to come back to New York City.

“She won’t be okay. She is traumatized. Can you imagine?”

Additional reporting by Tina Moore Girl, 9, hit in the head by adult in Central Park attack: police officers


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