Search is on for suspect in Woodhaven stabbing

Search is on for suspect in Woodhaven stabbing
Images courtesy NYPD
Bianca Fortis

Police were still on the hunt for a man wanted in the stabbing of a 17-year-old Woodhaven girl, and they have released new photos of the person who they believe may be the attacker.

On July 29 at about 11:25 p.m., Natasha Martinez was walking home from her job at a nearby McDonald’s. As she reached the front door of her house, an unidentified man approached the teen and stabbed her repeatedly in the back and torso. Police said he may have followed her from work or from a bodega where she had stopped for a snack.

The attacker immediately fled. The girl’s mother, hearing her daughter’s screams, came to the door where she found the girl on the ground covered in blood.

Martinez was listed in stable condition at Jamaica Hospital, police said.

Police have released new surveillance photos of the man they believe assaulted Martinez. He is a black male and appears to be wearing a black T-shirt in the photos.

Police earlier had released photos of another suspect, a man in a light-colored hooded sweatshirt.

Officials said they were investigating whether the incident was related to a prior feud Martinez had with a member of a gang.

A spokesman for the police said Wednesday it was “one of many investigative theories” they have.

Law enforcement officials Monday had questioned a suspected member of the Latin Kings gang about his possible involvement in the crime, according to a New York Post report. He was later released and no charges were filed.

The attack initially seemed to be unprovoked. Police were even investigating whether it was tied to an earlier stabbing in June, prompting concerns about a serial stabber.

In the first attack, a 36-year-old Queens Village woman was arriving home from work at 4:45 a.m. when a man in a black hoodie approached her and stabbed her several times in the throat.

Anyone with information about the stabbing is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS. All calls will be kept confidential.

Reach reporter Bianca Fortis by email at bfortis@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4546.

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