Today’s news:

Brown defers case in Forest Park attack

TimesLedger Newspapers

The case against a Howard Beach man who was suspected of the attempted rape against a woman in Forest Park has been deferred pending further investigation and he has been charged instead with groping another woman three blocks from the park, a spokeswoman from the Queens district attorney’s office said.

Richard Kassebaum, 42, was charged with sexual abuse, strangling and forcibly touching a woman in a March 31 incident near the Woodhaven Laundry Haven, at 85-42 Woodhaven Blvd., according to the criminal complaint filed by the district attorney.

Kassebaum followed his victim outside the Laundromat before allegedly grabbing her from behind, choking her with his arm and grabbing her buttocks before fleeing back into Laundry Haven, the complaint said.

Police had put out a release April 2 saying Kassebaum was charged with predatory sexual assault, attempted rape and sex abuse in a March 29 attack on a woman jogging through Forest Park.

But a spokeswoman for the DA’s office said Monday that charges against Kassebaum involving that attack had been deferred and will not be prosecuted at this time. A spokeswoman for the NYPD said police were still looking for a suspect in that case.

The spokeswoman would not say why Kassebaum had been arrested in the Forest Park incident or why the case had been deferred.

In the Forest Park case, the woman was attacked from behind by a man who zapped her with a stun gun and attempted to rape her, police said. The attacker was scared off by a couple out walking their dog who stumbled across them, cops said.

The jogger was treated for injuries to her neck at a nearby hospital, police said.

Reach reporter Phil Corso by e-mail at pcorso@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4573.

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