MANHATTAN, NYC – A 14-year-old girl visiting Times Square Sunday evening accused a man dressed as Elmo of groping her. While posing for a picture with the Sesame Street character, is when he inappropriately fondled her, according to the teen.
Furthermore, officials say the teenager was with a group of travelers who were visiting out of state. They approached the man dressed as Elmo for a photo opportunity shortly before 7 p.m.
Moreover, it was during the photo op when the Elmo character allegedly grabbed the 14-year-old girl’s buttocks.
According to authorities, the teen quickly alerted her caretakers, and as a result, the police were called.
Additionally, authorities have identified the suspect as 54-year-old Inocente Andrade-Pacheco. He was taken into custody and charged with aggressive touching and acting in a way that is harmful to a child.
Despite prosecutors requesting a $7,500 bail during his arraignment, Aldrada-Pacheco was released without bond. He continues to deny all allegations through his lawyer.
On the other hand, there have been continuous complaints about the costumed characters that crowd Times Square for years. Police first began receiving complaints several years ago regarding inappropriate behavior from the characters. Some of the complaints included aggressive solicitations for tips, assaults, forcible touching, and grand larceny.
As a result of the complaints, in 2016, the city passed a law prohibiting the characters from certain areas in Times Square.