Feb. 20, 2019 By Nathaly Pesantez
The Long Island City man arrested on Monday after allegedly raping a woman on Skillman Avenue last Friday could spend up to 25 years in prison if convicted, according to the Queens District Attorney’s office.
Matthew Luna, 27, faces charges including first-degree rape and first-degree criminal sexual act after allegedly following a woman near 54th Street and Skillman Avenue on the evening of Feb. 15, throwing her against a car, and raping her.
Luna, according to the DA, followed the 20-year-old victim after she got off the bus near the Woodside intersection at around 10:30 p.m. that night and asked her for directions to a nearby subway station.
He then told the victim that she was pretty and asked for a hug.
The victim, startled, backed away from Luna, who allegedly grabbed her arms and uttered. “Just give me what I want so I don’t have to kill you,” the DA said.
Luna then struck the 20-year-old, shoved her against a parked car, ripped off her clothes from the waist down and sexually assaulted her. He is also alleged to have thrown her to the ground when he raped her.
The victim was taken to a local hospital, where she was treated for her injuries.
Luna was arrested three days after the alleged rape, turning himself into police in a case that shook the neighborhood and beyond. The defendant, according to the DA, surrendered after video surveillance and photos of him became widespread.
“The defendant viciously attacked an unsuspecting woman shortly after she exited a bus in Sunnyside,” said Queens District Attorney Richard Brown. “This was a violent assault that should not have happened. Every woman should feel safe — day or night — traveling throughout Queens County. The defendant is in custody and will be held accountable for his alleged actions.”
Luna, who was arraigned last night, is due back in court on March 15.