Police officers search the bushes along Cross Island Expressway, a Parks Department property near 148th St., the scene of the attempted rape. (Photo: Anthony DelMundo for NY Daily News)
Racing to rescue a helpless woman from the clutches of a would-be rapist, Bryan Teichman had just seconds Wednesday to decide whether he should start yelling - or revert to his Marine training and attack the man, according to the New York Daily News.
"My gut said to scream first, to avoid the conflict," said the 31-year-old Queens resident. "So I screamed, you know, some profanities, but basically: 'Get off her!'"
That was enough, police said, to send the suspect running - and for Teichman to be hailed as the city's newest hero.
Police released sketch of the suspect.
"If I would have caught him, I would've felt like that," the self-deprecating dad from Fresh Meadows said. Police are now looking for the burly man, who Teichman said was dressed like a construction worker. In an interview with The Daily News, Teichman gave a stirring account of how he suddenly found himself coming to the aid of a stranger who had been accosted in broad daylight.
"It blows my mind that someone has the audacity to do that at 9 o'clock in the morning," he said. Teichman's brush with fate came as he was dropping off his daughter at the babysitter's house in Whitestone, which sits across the street from a small wooded area that abuts the Whitestone Expressway at the Cross Island Parkway service road and 148th St.
Most days, Teichman said, he leaves his daughter with Dawn Ottaviano at noon. On Wednesday, he dropped her off early so he could study for a physics exam at Nassau Community College, where he is an engineering major.
"I was in the house, and I heard some muffled screams," he said. Outside the window, they saw a surreal scene unfold.
"At first, it looked like they were running," Ottaviano told The News. "When I looked closer, it looked like he was hoisting her, grabbing her, pushing her."
"When I saw him throw her over the guardrail, that's when I knew it wasn't play," added Teichman. "I looked back at Dawn and I said 'Something's not right. I'm going over there.'"
Former Marine foils rape in wooded area on side of Queens road
New York Daily News - September 28th 2011 - By Jennifer H. Cunningham and Corky Siemaszko