Homeless man charged with strangling 16-year-old girl in Astoria

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Police charged a homeless man after he allegedly strangled a 16-year-old girl in Astoria. (Screenshot via NYPD)

A homeless man has been charged for allegedly strangling a 16-year-old girl who was sitting outside an Astoria restaurant on Monday, Oct. 4, according to authorities.

Police say that at approximately 5:30 p.m., Minvera Martinez approached the 16-year-old girl as she sat outside Watawa Sushi, located at 33-10 Ditmars Boulevard. Martinez, 36, placed the girl in a chokehold before fleeing the scene, law enforcement sources said.

The girl sustained pain, redness and swelling, but was not hospitalized.

Police released surveillance video of the incident on Oct. 8, and Martinez, who police say is undomiciled, was arrested at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 9, when he was charged with strangulation.


Anyone with information in regard to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the CrimeStoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM, on Twitter @NYPDTips.

All calls are strictly confidential.

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