MTA: 9-Year-Old Girl Punched in NYC by Man Released Without Bail Days Earlier for Similar Assault

Jean Carlos Zarzuela, 30

A man arrested for punching a random 9-year-old girl in New York City’s Grand Central station on Saturday had been released without bail in early April for allegedly breaking a woman’s nose in a similar assault.

Jean Carlos Zarzuela, 30, was arrested and charged with assault after the incident took place shortly before noon on Saturday, PIX11 reported. 

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) said a Bronx mother and daughter were standing in the dining concourse at around 11:49 a.m. when Zarzuela “approached the two without warning and punched the child in the face,” the outlet reported.

The unidentified girl had to be taken to Tisch Hospital to be treated for dizziness and pain, MTA said. 

Zarzuela left the scene but was arrested later that night, CBS News reported.

Officials also stated the suspect was already “known” to MTA police.

According to court records obtained by the AM New York Metro, Zarzuela was arrested April 4 for punching a 54-year-old woman and breaking her nose at Grand Central Terminal but was released without bail. 

Inside sources told the newspaper Zarzuela has had eight prior arrests in the city in total.

“It doesn’t make any sense that this guy — who recently was released after being charged with randomly punching someone else and breaking that victim’s nose — should be back in a public space where he can attack others, especially children,” MTA Communications Director Tim Minton said in a statement. “The people responsible for the criminal justice system need to learn from this episode before more innocent people become victims.”

The man also previously told police that he was homeless, the outlet noted.


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