Woman bit assailant to escape rape in NJ park, prosecutor says
BRIDGEWATER — A woman walking along a trail in Washington Valley Park said a man attempted to sexually assault her before she bit him and escaped, police said.
The woman, identified only as a 44-year-old from Warren Township, was waking inside the park off Miller Lane on the night of August 16 when the incident happened, Somerset County Prosecutor Michael H. Robertson said. The prosecutor said the woman told police that an unknown Hispanic man put a shirt over her face and pulled her off the trail, and attempted to sexually assault her. After getting away she found another hiker and was able to call 9-1-1.
The woman was able to give responding officers a description of the man, who was found after a search of the park, according to Robertson. The search included K-9 units from Warren Township and the Somerset County Sheriff's Office. After a search police found 18-year-old Elvin Martinez of Plainfield, who Robertson matched the description the woman had given.
Martinez was charged with third-degree criminal sexual contact, third-degree criminal restraint, fourth-degree criminal coercion, and simple assault, a disorderly persons offense.
He was held at the Somerset County Jail pending a detention hearing.
Washington Valley Park is a 719 acre facility along the First Watchung Ridge located between the first and second Watchung Mountains at the geographic center of Somerset County.
Robertson encouraged anyone with information about the incident to call 908-231-7100 or 908-722-4111.