by Howell PD,
HOWELL, NJ – A Howell resident has been arrested and charged with inappropriately touching a shopper at a local grocery store earlier this month.
Ehab E. Nassif, 59, is charged with fourth-degree Criminal Sexual Contact.
On Sunday, February 13, the adult female victim reported that while at the Lidl supermarket on U.S. Route 9 South the day prior, she had been followed around the store by an unidentified male later identified as Nassif. The suspect was described as wearing a black mask, gloves, a blue baseball hat, blue jacket, and jeans.
An investigation by the Howell Police Department determined that as the victim was shopping, the suspect continued to get closer to her by pretending to look at items on the shelf near her. As the victim reached for an item on the shelf, the subject then purposely rubbed his groin on her buttocks. The victim also reported observing the suspect do the same thing to a second fellow shopper, but when she reported what happened to representatives of the supermarket, the suspect left the scene without being identified.
Late last week, a concerned citizen who had become aware of the incident via social media contacted police reporting that a person she believed matched the description of the suspect was currently shopping at the HomeGoods store on U.S. Route 9 North. The person reported that she had observed the man walking down multiple aisles in the store to pass female customers, purposely reaching out his arm and hand so it would graze their buttocks.
The investigation then led to Nassif being identified as a suspect in the case, and he was placed under arrest at his home without incident, with multiple items of clothing matching the initial victim’s description of his appearance recovered from the scene.
A pair of photos of the defendant is being distributed along with this press release, as it is strongly believed that additional victims have yet to be identified. If you or someone you know has any information regarding the defendant or his conduct, please contact Howell Police Detective Saltzman at email@example.com or 732-938-4575, Ext. 2658.
“This was another example of the partnership between this community and police department resolving another incident,” Howell Police Chief Andrew A. Kudrick, Jr. said. “The collaboration of observant residents, alert officers, a driven detective, and the Howell Happenings social media platform resulted in this arrest.”
Despite the charges, every defendant is presumed innocent, unless and until found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, following a trial at which the defendant has all of the trial rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and State law.