Occupy Wall Street protesters said they are dealing with the sexual assault of a woman internally after she was attacked by a man in her tent in the early hours of the morning.
It is the second alleged sexual assault at the Occupy Wall Street camp, which organizers have warned is attracting prisoners straight out of Rikers, but have refused to call police.
It was reported that the woman was in her tent at around 06:00 a.m. yesterday when the man burst into her tent and attacked her.
After few moments, fellow protesters surrounded the attacker and shone flashlights in his face before chasing him out of Zuccotti Park where they are staying.
“We don’t tell anyone, we handle it internally,” a protester told the New York Post, adding that another woman was raped weeks earlier.
The woman said that fellow protesters were “yelling at him to leave”, shouting “pervert, pervert, get the f**k out.”
Occupy Wall Street organizers have raised concerns that the camp is becoming a refuge for homeless people and is attracting convicts fresh out of Rikers prison.
“They’re telling people who leave prison to go to Zuccotti Park,” Daniel Zetah, leader of the Occupy Wall Street community-relations group told the New York Post.
The newly-released criminals are thought be attracted by the free accommodation and food, and reported alcohol and drug-fuelled parties taking place at the site.
“There’s a lot of drugs, alcohol, assault [and] theft [by] the homeless groups coming in. We’ve had meetings all day to brainstorm what to do,” Daniel Zetah said.
The cold weather is continuing to plague the Occupy Wall Street protesters in New York, who have had their gas-powered generators confiscated by fire department as they are seen as a safety risk.
The movement organizers have put out an “urgent” alert on their website asking for waterproof boots, hats and gloves.
Occupy Wall Street protesters, who were drenched by snow and rain over the weekend, are reportedly “in need of emergency supplies crucial for cold weather survival”.
The protesters also want cots so that demonstrators can get off the ground and are looking for thermal heaters after the generators were taken.
It was reported that three protesters have been taken to hospital with cold-related ailments.
Other protesters say they will defiantly remain, no matter how bad the weather gets though.
Occupy Wall Street has reportedly raised $454,000 in donations. So far around $50,000 has been spent on clothing, food and medical supplies.